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Dr Drabu to present 4th Budget today

Monitor News Bureau





JAMMU:The Finance Minister, Dr Haseeb Drabu on Thursday gave final touches to the Budget 2018-19 to be presented by him in the State Legislature today. This will be the 4th Budget in a row to be presented by Dr Drabu.
The Finance Minister and his junior Minister Ajay Nanda were huddled with the team of officers from the Finance Department for the whole day today to give final shape to the budget document which was approved by the State cabinet last evening.
Chief Secretary, B B Vyas and Principal Secretary Finance, Navin Kumar Choudhary, were also present.
The Budget speech to be delivered by the Finance Minister in the legislature at 12 noon today, will be telecast live on Doordarshan, Gulistan TV and TakeOne TV. It will be also broadcast live on 92.7 Big FM and Radio Mirchi 98.3 FM.
The Finance Minister said he will make every effort to address the genuine concerns of every section of the society, while finalizing the budget proposals. He said the budget proposals to be presented by him tomorrow will be discussed threadbare by the legislators adding that good and genuine suggestions of the legislators will be given due consideration to make next year’s budget representative to the urges and aspirations of the people.
Dr Drabu said before formulating budget proposals, he undertook an exhaustive pre-budget exercise by consulting all the stakeholders including trade, industry , transporters, intellectuals, academicians, journalists and progressive farmers of both Jammu and Kashmir divisions to get first hand appraisal of their demands and suggestions.
Dr Drabu complimented the team of officers of the Finance Department for working with dedication and zeal to make the whole exercise of the budget preparation fruitful.
Pertinently, the crack team behind the State’s important fiscal exercise was working tirelessly for the past two months under the leadership of Principal Secretary Finance, Navin Kumar Choudhary to prepare the Budget document.
The other officers involved in this extended exercise include Director Codes, M A Andrabi, Director Budget, Imtiyaz Ahmad Mir, Additional Secretary Finance, Vishal Sharma, Joint Director Budget, Raman Gupta, Joint Director Resources, Showkat Hussain Mir, Additional Secretary Finance, Shahid Saleem, OSD to Finance Minister, Zamir Ahmad Qadri, Deputy Director Budget, Shafaat Yehaya and Accounts Officer Budget, Mushtaq Ahmad Shah.



Lockdown fallout: Anxiety, depression cases surge in Kashmir

Hirra Azmat



Srinagar, Oct 15: Fifty-year-old Fatima (name changed) feels jitters when she recalls the night she saw an SOS from her younger brother flashing on the television news channel.

“Call me immediately,” flashed the message on the scroll of a TV channel. The world blackened out for Fatima when she read the message from her younger brother.

It was after four weeks post abrogation of state’s special status that she heard from her younger brother, who works in a private company in Middle East.


Crushed by apprehensions triggered by the sudden message on TV, Fatima developed frequent panic attacks, which landed her at the Government Psychiatric hospital, Rainawari.

 “My wife kept on saying that something bad has happened to him. Despite our reassurances, she was bogged down by negative thoughts which became the reason for the panic attacks,” lamented her husband.

Moreover, he was not able to contact his brother-in-law as there was no functional land-line in the neighborhood. “Going to DC office was out of question given the severe restrictions from our side at that time,” he said

 Similarly 45-year-old Tabassum (name changed) was hovered by the negative thoughts of her daughter’s bleak future which landed her in depression.

She hoped that her daughter will benefit from the 50 percent quota reserved for the female MBBS students.

After the abrogation of article 370, she apprehended that the Centre would do away with the quota, thus, crushing her daughter’s dreams of becoming a doctor.

 “She cried very easily. Her recurrent question would be: Will the government revoke the quota?” said her sister.

A senior consultant at the Psychiatric hospital termed the abrogation of Article 370 as “precipitating” and “perpetuating” factor to the conflict that is already 30 decades old.

“So many Kashmiris studying and working outside couldn’t contact their family members. Those living in Kashmir couldn’t contact their near and dear ones outside the valley, or for that matter inside the vale. This heightened the anxiety levels,” he said

The doctor noted that only 5-10 percent of patients reported at the hospital in August as the patient inflow was impeded by the lockdown.

“In the beginning phase of the communication lockdown, we couldn’t see many patients at the hospitals. They couldn’t reach here due to restrictions. Our essential services were also impacted,” he said.

The doctor asserted that the long terms effects of the ongoing crisis will be worse. “There will be more of depression, post-traumatic stress disorders, and acute stress disorders,” he said.

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Omar sporting beard: Image shared on social media

Monitor News Bureau



Srinagar, Oct 15: A day after the mobile services were resumed in the Kashmir valley, the first image of the National Conference (NC) leader Omar Abdullah surfaced on social media.

Abdullah’s latest picture is doing rounds on Twitter and WhatsApp. The picture was reportedly taken when the NC delegation met him in Srinagar.

With a grey beard and short hair, Abdullah looks totally different than what he used to look prior to his detention.


The image is shared by various journalists.

Last month, reports surfaced that Omar had pronounced that he would not shave his beard till his release.

Reports also claimed that Abdullah spends time watching Hollywood movies and working out at the gym.

Along with Omar, his father Farooq Abdullah and Mehbooba Mufti were also put into house arrest after the Narendra Modi government scrapped the special status of Jammu and Kashmir by diluting the Article 370.

The vice-president of the NC is detained at the government guesthouse at Hari Niwas Palace in Srinagar, while PDP chief Mufti is placed under detention at a JKTDC-owned hut at Chashma Shahi.

Initially, both the leaders were lodged at Hari Niwas Palace.

On Monday, the Jammu and Kashmir administration resumed postpaid mobile services in the Valley.

The mobile services were shut down after the Centre’s decision to abrogate provisions of Article 370. However, prepaid and internet services will remain suspended for now. The Valley has around 66 lakh mobile users out of which 40 lakh use postpaid facilities.

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NIT Srinagar reopens




Srinagar, Oct 15: The National Institute of Technology (NIT) here reopened on Tuesday after being shut for two-and-a-half months.

The institution was closed in view of security concerns in the region post abrogation of Article 370 and the students who belonged to states other than Jammu and Kashmir were sent home.

“All the students were much tensed as the institution was closed for many days following the abrogation of the article 370. Now when it has finally re-opened we all are very excited and happy that we can continue our studies,” Praful, a student told ANI.


Mobile services were also restored in J&K on Monday after a span of over two months since the central government’s move to repeal Article 370 that accorded special status to the region.

The decision to restore mobile phone services came days after Jammu and Kashmir Governor Satya Pal Malik announced the withdrawal of security advisory for tourists from October 10.

The administration had also said that tourists desirous of visiting the region will be provided with the necessary assistance and logistic support. (ANI)

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