Srinagar, Oct 15: Jammu and Kashmir Governor’s Secretariat will close in summer capital, Srinagar, on October 26 in connection with shifting of Durbar move offices to Jammu.
As per communiqué of Raj Bhavan, all communications meant for Governor and his staff which cannot reach Raj Bhavan, Srinagar before October 26 may please be addressed to Raj Bhavan, Jammu, for further intimation.
The telephone/fax numbers at Raj Bhavan, Jammu are:Governor Office 2544989(Fax), Principal Secretary to Governor Office 2542902, 2542980, 2544870 (Fax), 2439449 (Residence)EPABX (Exchange) 2560225, 2544537, 254794.
Meanwhile, Chief Secretary BVR Subrahmanyam chaired a high-level meeting here Monday morning to take a comprehensive review of the arrangements for bi-annual DurbarMove.
The meeting was informed that as per the orders already issued by the General Administration Department (GAD), the offices observing 5-day week shall close in Srinagar on 26 October 2018 after office hours and offices observing 6-day week shall close on 27 October 2018 after office hours. All the offices will reopen in Jammu on 5 November 2018.
The meeting was told that adequate arrangements are in place for ferrying of official records and transportation of employees on October 27th, 28th and 29thand November 3rd and 4th. Only one-way traffic from Jammu to Srinagar will be allowed during these five days.
Secretary, Information Technology, Saugat Biswas informed the meeting that the IT Department is working towards installation of dedicated computers in each Department at the Civil Secretariat, both at Srinagar and Jammu, to avoid wear and tear during physical transportation of computers with bi-annual Durbar Move.
The Chief Secretary directed that each Department should be provided with External Hard Drive by the IT Department for shifting of records in digital format. He said from the next year minimum movement of files will be ensured and most of the records shall be shifted in digital format.
Secretary IT further informed that from the next Durbar Move, the WiFi and networking equipment won’t be shifted during Durbar Move as Civil Secretariat Jammu and Srinagar shall be provided with dedicated WiFi facilities.
Chief Secretary directed the IT department to ensure that LAN/Internet connections in Jammu Secretariat are fully functional by the time move offices reopen there.
To ensure smooth movement of Durbar Move convoy, the Chief Secretary instructed BEACON and NHAI authorities to ensure good condition of Srinagar-Jammu National Highway, especially on Banihal-Nashri and Chenani-Udhampur sections.
The meeting also took a holistic review of security, availability of trucks and buses, recovery vans, mobile workshops, health facilities and ambulances along the highway.
Chief Secretary instructed putting in place all necessary measures including security escort to ensure smooth movement of Darbar move vehicles up to their respective destinations. He instructed that extra buses and trucks be kept available during the move days besides the adequate number of cranes, mobile workshops, recovery vans, medical mobile teams, ambulances be deployed en-route along with necessary equipment and staff to meet any exigency.
Chief Secretary asked Food, Civil Supplies and Consumer Affairs department to issue temporary ration cards and gas connections to move employees for their Jammu stay and to ensure timely supply of rations besides, directing the concerned departments to ensure complete sanitation, availability of electricity and potable drinking water in all residential colonies of the move employees. He said the employees moving to Jammu should be provided new Ration Cards on the production of their official Identity Card alongwith a self-declaration regarding number of family members.
Chief Secretary also asked concerned officers of the Estates department and Jammu Municipal Corporation to inspect employee residential colonies and ensure that necessary facilities were in place including cleaning up water storage tanks and launching intensive sanitation drives in all colonies.
Director Estates informed the meeting that in addition to around government 3000 flats available for housing move employees, the Estates Department is hiring around 1200 hotel rooms, 150 JKTDC rooms at TRC Jammu and 280 private houses.
He also directed for adequate deployment of security in all residential colonies both in Srinagar and Jammu.
Divisional Commissioner Jammu, Sanjeev Verma; IGP Jammu, SDS Jamwal; DDC Jammu, Ramesh Kumar, Commissioner JMC and other concerned officers from Jammu attended the meeting through video-conferencing.
3 militants killed in Budgam encounter
Srinagar, Jan 21: Three militant of Hizbul Mujahideen outfit were killed in an encounter at Hapatnar woods in Charar-e-Shareef area of central Kashmir’s Budgam district on Monday.
News agency Global News Service quoted a senior police officer saying that a joint team of Army’s 53 RR, SOG and CRPF launched a cordon-and-search operation in forest area of Hapatnar early Monday morning following “credible inputs” about the presence of some militants.
As the joint team of forces intensified the combing operation, the militants hiding in the area opened fire triggering off a gunfight which continued intermittently till late in the evening.
During the course of gunfight, three militants belonged to Hizbul Mujahideen outfit were killed, the officer said.
The operation was prolonged due to the tough terrain amid inclement weather conditions, he added.”So far one body has been recovered along with arms and ammunition. The other two bodies which are lying inside the hideout are yet to be retrieved,” the officer said.
“The identity of the slain is being ascertained,” the officer said.
The officer said that the government forces have also blasted the hideout of the militants in the mountainous area, covered under plenty of snow.
Meanwhile, sources identified one among the slain Shahid Baba of Drabgam, Pulwama. (With inputs from GNS)
Snow, rains persist: Land, air traffic disrupted
Srinagar, Jan 21: Although not as severe as predicted, fresh snowfall and rains were Monday lashed Kashmir bringing some respite to the people from the cold wave.
The plains of Kashmir witnessed moderate rainfall from early hours of Monday, while there were reports of snowfall in higher reaches of the valley, officials said here.
The MeT Office has forecast widespread rain and snow over the state with heavy falls at isolated places till Tuesday.
Meanwhile, traffic on the 300-km long Srinagar-Jammu highway was halted because of heavy snowfall on the stretch.
“Today no movement of vehicular traffic on Jammu Srinagar NHW from Jammu towards Srinagar and vice versa as road blocked due to snow accumulation at Nowgam-Jawahar Tunnel-Qazigund Sector and still snowing,” J&K Traffic Police tweeted Monday morning.
Bad weather conditions also disrupted operations at the Srinagar International Airport here, leading to the cancellation of four flights, officials said.
“Due to the inclement weather, four of the 27 flights to and fro Srinagar were cancelled on Monday,” an official of the Airport Authority of India.
Another 11 flights got delayed due to poor visibility and intermittent rainfall since Monday morning, he said.
The minimum temperature in Srinagar on Sunday settled at minus 0.3 degree Celsius, same as previous night, a MET official said.
He said Qazigund, the gateway town to the valley, in south Kashmir recorded a low of 0.6 degree Celsius, while the nearby Kokernag town registered a low of minus 0.3 degrees Celsius Sunday night.
The mercury in Kupwara town in north Kashmir settled at a low of minus 0.6 degree Celsius. Gulmarg ski-resort in north Kashmir recorded a low of minus 4 degrees Celsius Sunday night, while Pahalgam tourist resort, in south Kashmir, recorded a low of 0.2 degrees Celsius, the official said.
He said Leh, in the frontier Ladakh region, recorded a low of minus 5.6 degrees Celsius, while the mercury in Kargil registered a low of minus 14.0 degrees Celsius. Kargil was the coldest recorded place in Jammu and Kashmir, colder than even Drass town which recorded a low of minus 6.8 degrees Celsius.
Kashmir is currently under the grip of ‘Chillai Kalan’, the 40-day harshest period of winter when the chances of snowfall are maximum and the temperature drops considerably.
‘Chillai Kalan’ ends on January 31, but the cold wave continues even after that in Kashmir. The 40-day period is followed by a 20-day long ‘Chillai Khurd’ (small cold) and a 10-day long ‘Chillai Bachha’ (baby cold).
Lack of funds halts vital JK tourism projects
Srinagar, Jan 21: The Governor-led administration is mulling to start new projects to boost tourism in Kashmir even as several old ones have been left midway due to want of funds.
In December last year, the administration ordered the constitution of an official panel for identification of new projects in tourism sector to be implemented under Prime Minister’s Development Package (PMDP).
Back in 2014, the Government of India, under Project/Infrastructure Development for Destination and Circuits (PIDDC), had sanctioned Rs 7593.88 lakh for development of basic tourism infrastructure in Jammu and Kashmir through private investment, opening of new potential destinations and development of heritage, adventure, and pilgrim and eco-tourism.
However, the projects have been left incomplete as the Centre has, as per the latest official data, released only Rs 3504.80 lakh of the sanctioned amount against which the department shows 100 percent expenditure.
Now, due to the unavailability of funds, the PIDDC project is on standstill.
The project included development of Eidgah, face-lifting of Khankahi Moula, Development of Jamia Masjid Heritage Corridor, Renovation of Aali Masjid, Upgrading of Ziyarat Abdul Razaq Sahib at Hawal, Ziyarat Hazrat Balaad Rumi at Rajouri Kadal, Ziyarat Akhoon Sahib and TajBibi at Fateh Kadal, Ziyarat Hazrat Noor Shaha Sahib at Narwara, and Conservation of areas from Naagar Nagar to Watlab.
The tourist circuit from Naagar Nagar to Watlab, which was a key component of the project, still requires Rs 2312.90 lakh to be completed, official data shows.
Another main component of PIDDC project, construction of Trans Himalayan Culture Centre in Leh, too requires further Rs 1094.48 lakh for completion.
Similarly, development of Khiram Shrine in South Kashmir’s Bijbehara town also remains incomplete for want of funds.
Section Officer of Planning, Tourism Department, Sajad Ahmad, told The Kashmir Monitor that “65 per cent” of the work has been completed on Naagar Nagar to Watlab component of the project.
“We had to stop the work because the Centre did not release the funds,” he added.
Executive Engineer, JK Tourism, Abdul Qayoom Kirmani said they have asked the Government of India for the pending funds and also sent to them the proposal of the new projects.
“We have identified new Rs 100 crore new projects under PMDP-II, which comprises of nine circuits,” he said.