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Govt to develop network of STPs to save water bodies

Monitor News Bureau

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JAMMU, DEC 05: As a long-term strategy to for conservation of prominent water bodies in the State, including Dal Lake, Jhelum, Chenab and Tawi rivers from pollution hazards, and for the restoration of pristine glory of twin capital cities viz; Jammu and Srinagar, the Government will develop Sewage Treatment Plants (STPs) of adequate capacities. Such STPs will also be developed in all major towns and prominent tourist resorts across the State.
Besides, Government will also develop more multitier ultra-modern parking lots in two capital cities and Katra town in order to ensure efficient traffic management. Presently these cities are witnessing huge quantum of traffic flow from within and outside the State, and there is great need for more such facilities to coup with the prevailing situation.
These decisions were taken during the pre-budget consultation meetings of the Departments of Housing and Urban Development, Tourism, Culture, PWD (R&B), Food, Civil Supplies & Consumer Affairs chaired by Principal Secretary Finance, Navin K Choudhary here today.
To immediately start with the exercise for these projects, the necessary token money was earmarked for the current financial year and rest will be projected in the next year’s budget.
Financial Commissioner, Housing & Urban Development, K.B. Agarwal, Commissioner/Secretary R&B, Khurshid Ahmed Shah, Commissioner/Secretary FCS&CA, Dr Abdul Rashid, Commissioner Secretary Culture, Mohammad Saleem Shishgar along with their team of officers attended the meetings.
While initiating marathon deliberations on the budget proposals of the Housing & Urban Development Department for the next financial year, the Principal Secretary called for prioritizing the above projects and immediately starting work on these physically. He called for submitting viable projects for up-gradation of civic facilities, street lights, lanes and drains and other important facilities for the people. He asked for tangible proposals for the beautification of Jammu and Srinagar cities in view of their importance and stressed the need for effective steps to check that no drainage water flows to the main water bodies which pollute the entire environment of these cities.
In order to address the problem of accommodation for the government departments, the Principal Secretary urged the VCs, JDA and SDA to identify suitable land at some prominent locations to construct multi-storey accommodation to house maximum number of government offices. He also called for judicious use of land and resources.
During the discussions of Tourism and Culture, the Principal Secretary emphasized the need for strengthening the existing infrastructural facilities for the tourists in all prominent tourist destinations to increase the footfall of domestic as well as foreign tourists. He also asked for identification of unexplored tourist destinations, heritage places in all three regions of the State so that these are brought at the tourist map. He said tourism is foremost identity and mainstay of State’s economy and every possible effort must be made for its promotion.
He called upon the Tourism Secretary to workout prospective proposals for the development of this vital sector and asked for evolving new concepts for the promotion of tourism worldwide and launching a massive publicity campaign in the potential States. He also suggested to bring out some credible tourism publicity material in the form of pamphlets, booklets highlighting the significance of various tourist destinations and facilities across the State and arranging their distribution at centres of attraction like airports, railway stations, inter-state bus stands and prominent tourist locations in other States to attract tourists towards Jammu and Kashmir. He also called for promoting adventure, religious, heritage and eco-tourism for which there is great potential in the State. He laid stress on strict adherence of environment norms while undertaking new ventures, adding that degradation of environment and ecology is the cause of concern for everyone and it must be protected at all costs.
The budget proposals of PWD (R&B), Food, Civil Supplies & Consumer Affairs were also discussed threadbare and concerned Administrative Secretaries presented their view points on the futuristic requirements to run the affairs of their respective departments.
Issuing common instructions to all departments for curtailing the unfruitful expenditures under various heads, Navin called for generating own revenue for meeting their internal expenditures. He suggested for imposing minor charges on various kinds of services being rendered by the departments.


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Kashmir

Govt committed to revive pristine glory of water bodies: Div Com

Monitor News Bureau

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SRINAGAR, SEPTEMBER 19: Divisional Commissioner Kashmir, Baseer Ahmad Khan, today said that government is committed to revive the pristine glory of water bodies in Kashmir valley.

The Divisional Commissioner said this while taking stock of revival measures for Wular Lake, Hokersar and Kreentchoo-Chandhara wet lands at a meeting here.

He directed WUCMA to conduct a survey with Wildlife and Revenue authorities in peripheral areas of the Wular Lake for identification of encroached spots.

 

For Hokersar and Kreentchoo-Chandhara wet lands, Deputy Commissioners of Srinagar, Budgam and Pulwama districts were directed to prepare a complete demarcation and encroachment report of the wetlands within 20 days.

It was said that concerned Deputy Commissioners will conduct an outer tour of the water bodies along with officers, Panchayats and Municipal Committees and propose a separate land fill site for dumping solid waste on scientific lines.

The Divisional Commissioner directed Deputy Commissioners to involve local Panchayats for safeguarding and conservation of water bodies.

Additional Commissioner Kashmir, Chief Wildlife Warden, Additional Deputy Commissioner Srinagar and other concerned officers were present in the meeting where as Deputy Commissioners of Bandipora, Budgam and Pulwama participated in the meeting through video conferencing.

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Kashmir

Govt inaugurates 15 power projects in Jammu & Kashmir

Monitor News Bureau

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Union Power Minister RK Singh and Jammu and Kashmir Governor Satya Pal Malik have jointly inaugurated 15 power projects and laid the foundation stone for 20 others worth 10,000 crore rupees in the state. Addressing a function in Srinagar, Power Minister said, the government is working to ensure 24 hours electricity supply to all the citizens of the country, including in Jammu and Kashmir, and Ladakh. He said, the power supply in this winter will be much better than in the past.

Speaking on the occasion, Governor Satya Pal Malik said  development works in Jammu and Kashmir will prompt People of Pakistan Occupied Kashmir to revolt against Islamabad and join India.

Meanwhile, Union Minister Jitendra Singh has said that the transition of Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh to Union Territories will be smooth. He said, any arrangement or mechanism which evolves will be in the best interest of all the stakeholders. Dr Jitendra Singh was addressing the Annual Conference of Chief Secretaries and Principal Secretaries of all States in New Delhi yesterday.

 
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Kashmir

How can PSA be slapped against Farooq Abdullah: Hasnain Masoodi

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How can PSA or Public Safety Act be slapped against National Conference patron Farooq Abdullah who has been in public life for 50 years, someone who has been an MP, and a three time Chief Minister, asks National Conference MP Justice Hasnain Masoodi in an interview with IANS.

“Dr Abdullah has put forth the Kashmir case for India before the international fora. Can he be a risk to the public order and security of the state? Nobody will agree to this,” Justice Masoodi said.

Justice Hasnain Masoodi and his fellow National Conference MP Akbar Lone, who held a meeting with Dr Abdullah and his son Omar Abdullah last week said that Farooq Abdullah is not keeping good health, while Omar Abdullah is in good spirits.

“Dr Farooq Abdullah has some health issues. On August 3, there were some concerns about his health. His health may not be worse as compared to the first week of August, but he is not keeping good health. Omar Abdullah is in good spirits,” Justice Hasnain Masoodi said.

Justice Hasnain Masoodi said that the revocation of Article 370 is neither in favour of the state nor the country.

“The scrapping of this Article will widen the gulf between Kashmir and the rest of the country,” Masoodi said.

He said there has been no significant improvement in the situation in Kashmir since August 5, when the article was scrapped and this is drawing international attention.

“Things are the same in Kashmir, though some public transport is plying, mobile phone service continue to remain blocked. There is an information blockade. Landlines have been opened up, but because of the shift to the digital world, most people have disconnected their landlines,” Justice Masoodi said.

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