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Augment WSSs, harness water resources to address water scarcity issue: Adv Ganai to officials

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Srinagar, Oct 17: Advisor to Governor Khurshid Ahmad Ganai Wednesday called for taking concrete measures to augment the existing water supply schemes (WSSs) to address water scarcity issues and making J&K zero-shortage drinking water state at earliest.

The Advisor stated this while reviewing the functioning of Public Health Engineering (PHE) and Irrigation and Flood Control (I&FC) departments. The meeting was attended by Secretary PHE, I&FC Farooq Ahmad Shah, Chief Engineer PHE, Jammu, Ashok Gandotra, Chief Engineer PHE Kashmir Abdul Wahid, Director Finance, Azad Ahmad Wani, Director Planning MY Bhat, Superintending Engineers and other concerned.

Ganai emphasized on sustained efforts to harness the State’s abundant water resources in order to provide safe drinking water to every household.

 

He asked the officials to complete all the incomplete schemes at earliest so that pure drinking water can be provided to the people in water scarce areas. He said the department can prioritize some languishing projects on merit under the new schemes so that funds can be provided for early completion of the projects.

Officials informed the Advisor that the department has forwarded 448 water supply projects with a balance cost of Rs 786.86 crore to the Finance Department against which 221 projects with a balance cost of Rs 458.49 crore have been recommended by the High-Power Committee.

The Advisor, however, stressed upon a well-thought-out strategy before framing modalities of new water supply schemes, in particular relating to source depletion and long-term viability. While reviewing the water supply scenario in major cities and towns of the state, he urged the officials to augment the existing water supply schemes so that the demand for drinking water supply is resolved.

It was given out that in order to meet the shortfall of water supply in Srinagar city, WSS Tangnar has been taken up under JNNURM for augmentation of drinking water supply costing Rs 148.37 crore while in Jammu city augmentation of water supply from River Chenab costing Rs 826 crore stands formulated for providing additional drinking water of 240MLD to Jammu city.

The Meeting also discussed the water supply scenario of other major towns including Sopore, Baramulla, Anantnag, Poonch, Rajouria, Samba and other towns.

A detailed discussion was held on the streamlining of collection of water tariff to overcome the losses. Advisor stressed on the need to streamline the collection system for the convenience of the people.

It was given out that there is an approved allocation of Rs 1939.29 crore under state sector under various components including PHE, Irrigation, Flood Control and PMDP and that 50 percent of the amount has been expended under various schemes.

The meeting was informed that at present the department is providing safe drinking water to 9292 rural habitations while 6666 habitations are partially covered with the varying service level.

The meeting also discussed the flood protection works being undertaken by the department. Officials said that all the flood protection related works shall be taken on priority and completed as early as possible.

It was said that de-silting and related flood protection works are being executed at multiple places simultaneously in phase-I including at Shariefabad, Naidkhai, Padshahi Bagh, Rambagh and Bemina.  Further re-sectioning of the flood spill channel from Bemina to Naidkhai is being carried out with an expenditure of Rs 82 crore.


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State

Investigation started in Jammu cable car incident: DRIL

Kashmir News Service

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Srinagar, Jan 22: The investigation regarding the death of two labourers during the mock-drill of car cable accident in Jammu is underway while as the reports added that the Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) were not followed during the mock-drill.

Two labourers died while four others sustained injuries on Sunday evening after a rescue trolley had fallen during the mock drill near the Mahamaya temple.

Talking to a local news gathering agency, Executive Vice President of Damodar Ropeways & Infra Limited (DRIL) said that the investigation into the incident is going on. “Police is investigating the matter. We cannot say anything in this regard until the investigation is completed,” he added.

 

However, reports informed that the SOPs were not followed while conducting the mock-drill ahead of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit for its inauguration.

It added that as per the SOPs, while performing the mock drills, the executing agency needed to inform all other agencies concerned.

“The rescue trolley involved in the incident was meant for a maximum of four people, but there were six in it. Also, all people performing the mock drill should have worn headgear and had to be hooked to the rope,” reports quoting sources said, adding that no safety guidelines were followed during the mock drill, otherwise precious lives could have been saved.

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Mufti-Jagmohan camaraderie proved detrimental for Kashmir: Sagar

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Srinagar, Jan 22: Jammu and Kashmir National Conference on Tuesday paid tributes to the victims of Gawkadal massacre saying that people have not forgotten the massacre let loose on the civilians on that day.

In a statement issued here, addressing a gathering of party functionaries, and workers of Srinagar District at party headquarter Nawa –e-Subha Srinagar, party’s General Secretary Haji Ali Muhammad Sagar said, “Those who are passing the blame and shedding crocodile tears now on the plight of Kashmiris are the one who actually traded the miseries of the people for grabbing power,” adding that Mufti as home minister trusted Jagmohan on kashmir, what followed is history.

Sagar in the statement said that Mufti through his nominated Governor unleashed havoc in Kashmir and that as home minister of India Mufti presided over 18 massacres in Kashmir including Mashali Mohalla massacre, Islamia college massacre, Chara- e- Sharief massacre, Shopian massacre, Pulwama, Kulgam massacre and Habbak massacre.

 

“Mufti-Jagmohan camaraderie proved detrimental for Kashmir, it is this camaraderie that is credited with unleashing Operation Catch and Kill, crackdowns and other human rights violations. Not just that Mufti extended draconian laws like AFSPA to Kashmir and besides that Ikhwan was also a brain child of Late Mufti Syed,” he said adding, “Continuing with their legacy of political bankruptcy Mufti’s entered into a trade policy with BJP with a sole design to destroy the respect and dignity of kashmiris.”

Sagar maintained what was left of our special status; Mufti a former lieutenant of G M Sadiq took it upon himself to destroy it. “The BJP-PDP coalition opened flood gates for all such forces as are contriving hard to harm our state’s special status.”

He said that Dr Farooq Abdullah owing to communal disposition of late Jagmohan insisted on then government at the centre not to appoint him as state’s governor. “It was late Mufti who nominated him and was instrumental in thrusting him on the state. No sooner did he become Governor, Dr. Farooq resigned as a mark of protest. What followed is written in bold red letters in the annals of history,” he said.

The meet was attended by District president Srinagar Peer Afaq, JKNC Women’s wing president Shameema Firdous, Ali Muhammad Dar, Irfan shah and others.

Sagar maintained that Mehbooba trailing her father path traded the very dignity of chief minister’s post by bald-facedly presiding over the large scale maiming, killings, blinding, nepotism, corruption, human rights violation during her stint as chief minister. “It was for the first time that people were not allowed to pray at Jamia Masid for many months altogether,” he said.

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Tourism deptt organsies first road show of winter in Pune

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Pune: Tourism Department in collaboration with Kashmir Hotel and Restaurant Owners Federation (KHAROF) held an impressive Travel Show in Pune on Monday seeking the cooperation of the travel associations and the media from the city for the promotion of J&K tourism.

Over 150 leading tour operators from the city attended show who also interacted with the members from the KHAROF.

Former Union Minister and Congress leader Jairam Ramesh who attended the show said Kashmir has immense tourism potential and people are most peaceful and loving in nature.

 

“Everyone should visit J&K State and see the nature’s beauty. The beauty also lies in the hospitality of the people who are very warm and welcoming,” he said.

Pune Mayor Mukta Tilak shared her experience of visiting Kashmir.

She said she found it safest place for travellers especially for woman.

“Even if we travel in auto at late evening, we are safe as people of the Kashmir are very good in nature and they take care of the tourists very well,” she said.

She urged the travel agents from Pune to promote J&K in a big way so that the travellers from Maharashtra will also visit paradise on Earth.

Earlier, Deputy Director Tourism Kashmir Riyaz Shah gave a detailed presentation on the tourism products which Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh has to offer.

The seminar is a part of series of road shows the department is organizing to promote J&K for the travellers within and outside the country.

Shah said J&K state is diverse in every aspect – be it leisure, adventure, culture, handicraft, cuisine, landscape, religion, architecture.

“Whatever you name it, we have it. J&K is a complete package. For a traveller, he has everything to see in one state,” he said, adding, “We are home to many famous gardens and heritage sites like Pari Mahal, Hari Parbat fort, Burzuhama ruins over 3000 years old, Mubrak Mandi, Shankar Acharya temple (250 B.C.), one of the biggest sun temples in India Martand Sun temple which was built in the 8th century, the Nara Nag temple ruins, and also famous sufi Shrines like Char-i-Sharief, Mukhdoom Sahaib, Ashmukam, Khankah Mohallah and many more.”

Riyaz Shah said that lot of filmmakers from Bollywood and even South India are shooting in Kashmir and the department is facilitating their shooting permission through single window system.

“Even now Malaysian and Thai films are being shot in Kashmir,” he said.

He also invited corporate houses for conventions and meetings to J&K saying the state has finest properties to hold such events.

President KHAROF Abdul Wahid Malik in his welcome address offered discounted packages for the travellers from Maharashtra.

He said Kashmir has over 60000 bed capacity and KHAROF is one of the largest hotel associations catering to over 24000 bed capacity from budget to star category hotels.

He invited the travellers to visit Kashmir saying the place is not only most beautiful place on the Earth but safest also.

KHAROF also released its annual directory during the show.

Earlier, the Tourism Department and KHAROF addressed media in a separate press conference.

Former KHAROF President Javed Bashir Burza briefed the media about the overall tourism infrastructure development in Kashmir.

Sanjay Nahar, the founder of Sarhad, a social organization dedicated to work in border areas, was also present in the press conference who informed them about the safety of the travellers in Kashmir.

Dr Vishwas Kelkar, president, Travel Agents Association of Pune (TAAP) also spoke on the occasion.

Senior Vice President Syed Masood Ahmad Shah, Secretary General KHAROF Maqsood Misri among other office bearers also participated in the event.

Chairman Pilgrim and Leisure Tour Operators Forum Nasir Shah moderated the show. Chairman Jammu and Kashmir Tourism Alliance Manzoor Pakhtoon, Patron Association of Kashmir Tour Operators Nazir A Mir also participated in the show.

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