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Aspirational Districts:NITI Aayog CEO hails performance by Baramulla, Kupwara

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Srinagar, Oct 14: Chief Executive Officer (CEO) NITI Aayog, Amitabh Kant has hailed the impressive progress made by district Baramulla and Kupwara in upgradation of basic amenities for the people under the Aspirational Districts Programme.

Kant conducted an extensive tour of these north Kashmir districts on Saturday to personally take stock of the progress made under various developmental indicators under the Aspirational Districts Programme. He was accompanied by Joint Secretary, NITI Aayog, Rakesh Ranjan, Principal Secretary Planning, Development & Monitoring, Rohit Kansal, Secretary, Social Welfare, Cooperatives and Tribal Affairs, Dr Farooq Ahmad Lone, Secretary Youth Services & Sports and Information, Sarmad Hafeez, Mission Director, National Health Mission, J&K, Bhupinder Kumar, Director School Education Kashmir Dr G N Itoo and other concerned officers.

Winding up his visit, Kant, in a series of tweets, lauded the performance in power, health, education, horticulture and skill development sectors in these districts. He hailed the commitment and dedication of the officers/officials for reaching out to the people and fulfilling their developmental needs.

 

During his visit to Kupwara, NITI Aayog CEO visited various sites and inspected the developmental projects in Machil and Handwara areas. He also inspected the Water Reservoir constructed at Badkoot, Wadipora.

“Visited Kupwara district in Kashmir to review the progress of #aspirationaldistrict scheme. Delighted to meet local people & a highly motivated & committed team of officials led by Collector Khalid (Jahangir). District has made rapid progress in all indicators particularly health. Congrats!,” Kant tweeted.

In another tweet Kant said; “Wonderful to see electricity reaching every single household after 71 years of independence in far flung #aspirationaldistrict of Kupwara in Kashmir. Great work under Saubhagya in a mission mode. This is bordering PoK & huge challenges have been overcome. Thanks 4 initiative @PMOIndia.”

Regarding his visit to Pashmina Kani Shawl Weaving Center at Wadipora in Kupwara, Kant tweeted; “visited Pashmina Kani shawl weaving & training centre in Kupwara district of Kashmir. It’s a rare weaving heritage of Kashmir where gorgeous patterns/motifs are woven into Pashmina shawls. A group of four women take months to weave one shawl. Truly unique!”

At Baramulla Kant inaugurated Dialysis Centre under Pradhan Mantri National Dialysis Programme at District Hospital Baramulla and a smart classroom with Computer Laboratory at Government Boys Higher Secondary School Baramulla.

“Visited Baramulla #aspirationaldistrict of Kashmir. Amazing experience visiting the District hospital. It’s one of the finest, cleanest, most well equipped hospitals with a highly dedicated team of Doctors & staff. Delighted to inaugurate the Dialysis Centre.Gr8 work by district team,” he tweeted.

The CEO assured full support from the central government for implementation of the activities identified for both the districts under the Aspirational District programme.


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Kashmir

Crackdown launched on illegal selling of tobacco products in Srinagar

Crackdown launched on illegal selling of tobacco products in Srinagar

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Srinagar, Jun 25: The Srinagar administration Tuesday launched a city-wide crackdown on illegal sale of cigarettes among other tobacco products holding simultaneous inspections of markets in various areas.

The inspections were held in the wake of growing concerns about increasing prevalence of substance abuse in Srinagar and to verify adherence to the Cigarettes & Other Tobacco Products Act or COTPA 2003 which prohibits advertisement of and provides for regulation of trade and commerce in production and distribution of cigarettes and other tobacco products.

Large number of stores and vendors situated at different places were found selling cigarettes without the mandatory pictorial warnings on packets thereof. Huge cache of such cigarettes was also seized from various markets during the inspections.

 

Some 50 stores and vendors including those found selling cigarettes among other tobacco products close to schools among other educational institutions in violations of COTPA and violating other provisions thereof were booked with several of them sealed during the inspections.

It is notable that the data suggests that the annual amount spent on tobacco consumption in Srinagar is a staggering Rs 131 crore which is the highest in the State. This among other forms of substance abuse involving both genders is growing into a serious cause of concern in the district.

Deputy Commissioner Srinagar Dr Shahid Iqbal Choudhary who has issued strict instructions to concerned officers to crackdown on violators and offenders said violations of COTPA account for serious offences and will be dealt with in the context of public safety.

Dr Shahid assured of sustained efforts to check substance abuse in Srinagar but also urged the general public and parents in particular to do their bit emphasizing their important role therein and to assist the administration in its efforts to curb prevalence thereof.

Last month a district level coordination committee comprising 15 members from different departments and organisations was constituted in the district for the implementation of COTPA.

Different members of the committee have been assigned different roles and responsibilities for ensuring effective and functional application of tobacco control in the district.

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Kashmir

Amit Shah should start process of dialogue with all stakeholders: Sagar

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Srinagar, Jun 25: Ahead of the visit of union Home Minister Amit Shah’s visit to Jammu and Kashmir, National Conference has hoped that the central government will begin dialogue on Kashmir to restore peace in the state.

National Conference General Secretary Ali Muhammad Sagar said that Kashmir valley is going through bloodshed, tension and arrests of youth on daily basis which further deteriorate the situation.

“Home ministers visit Kashmir, but this time we hope the visiting home minister will start process of dialogue with all stakeholders here which will help improve the situation,” he said.

 

He said that the daily pensive situation, ongoing bloodshed, and arrests of youth will stop only through initiatives of peace through dialogue.

“We hope the visit of home minister should make difference in Kashmir situation. If the home minister starts any dialogue process to which will improve situation here, we welcome it,” he said.

Expressing the displeasure with the Reservation Bill brought up the home minister, Sage said that NC is against the procedure which was adopted by the central government.

“The procedure adopted by the centre government to bring the bill violation of article 370. We are not against reservation for any particular section of people. We are against the procedure adopted by the government,” he said.

He said that Member Parliament of National Conference Dr Farooq Abdullah will take a stand over the bill in the ongoing session of Parliament.

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Kashmir

Amit Shah should inaugurate a new era of engagement in Kashmir: Faesal

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Srinagar, Jun 25: President J&K Peoples Movement Shah Faesal has said that on his maiden visit to Kashmir as Home Minister, Amit Shah should inaugurate a new age of engagement and reach out to people of the State.

In a statement issued, Shah Faesal said that Central Government led by PM Narendra Modi has an extraordinary opportunity to take bold decisions on Kashmir and bring peace to Valley while taking all stakeholders on board.

He argued for initiation of dialogue process, resumption of Cross LoC trade, freeing of political prisoners who are in jails for minor offenses, among other political initiatives needed at this hour.

 

Shah Faesal also called for immediate implementation of Universal Basic Income scheme for BPL households of the State, age relaxation of UPSC/JEE IIT aspirants from J&K State, improvement of inter-provincial road connectivity and four-laning if Srinagar-Salamabad, Srinagar-Teetwal roads.

JKPM President expressed hope that the Home Minister would facilitate creation of an environment of peace in which developmental activity and will pick up and Tourism potential of the State will be harnessed.

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