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JK to get record allocation of funds under MGNREGA






JAMMU, NOV 21: For the first time in history of Jammu and Kashmir, the state is all set to get a record allocation of funds under MGNREGA since the inception of this scheme in the state.

The Central Government has appreciated the effective implementation and subsequent creation of durable assets under MGNREGA in the state and has expressed its keenness to provide more funds under the scheme.

A 7-member team lead by Joint Secretary Union Ministry of Rural Development Aparjita Sarangi is on a 4-day visit to the state to inspect and assess the implementation of MGNREGA in the state and during their visit the team praised the efforts of the state government for the effective implementation of the scheme.


The Central Government has released Rs 900 crores as central share under the scheme so far. However after the visit, the central government has expressed willingness to allocate funds upto the tune of Rs 2000 crore for the current year keeping in view the performanance of the state.

After completing the tour of Jammu Division, the Joint Secretary called on Minister for Rural Development Panchayati Raj Abdul Haq Khan and had a detailed interaction with regard to the implementation of MGNREA in the state.

During the meeting, she apprised the minister about the purpose of the tour and also shared her feedback and observations from her field visit to various blocks and Panchayats of the Jammu Division.

The Joint secretary appreciated the efforts of the State Rural Development in effective implementation of the MGNREGA scheme in the state and creation of durable assets in villages for the benefit of general public besides proving employment to the unskilled and unemployed youths of the rural areas.

She said the centre is keen to provide more funds to the state under MGNREGA to expedite the process and enable the state to receive full grants provided the state continues to do good work on ground effectively.

She said keeping in view the performance of the state, the  central government has doubled the target of man days generation under the scheme  from 1.19  crore to 3 crores mandays and has asked the state that if it achieved the target before time, the same can be again revised.

While appreciating the central government for whole hearted funding under MGNREGA, Minister said despite the problems faced by the state, the department was able to successfully implement MGNREGA scheme at the grass root level. He said for the first time the department started prioritizing works under MGNREGA for its effective implementation. He said the department had prioritized rural connectivity and flood protection works in past two years and a network of roads and bridges have been constructed in rural areas that has changed its developmental scenario.

The team also lauded the leadership of the minister in leading the team for grand success in implementation of the scheme wherein the state has bagged many awards at the national level. The team also lauded the performance of the state government for early implementation of E-FMS in the state. They termed the launch of e-FMS as a revolutionary step that will ensure that the beneficiaries not to move from one office to another for payment and instead the department will directly transfer wages to their already linked bank accounts. “This step will not only ease out the whole process of disbursing payment to the beneficiaries but also remove the hurdles and makes it paperless besides eliminating delays in wage payment”.

Minister for RDD Abdul Haq assured the team that the state will further improve the quality of work and said that they have taken it as a mission and assured the visiting team that his team will work religiously for effective implementation of the scheme.

Later the Central team held an interactive session with ACDs, BDOs and other senior officials of the state and received the feedback from them about the implementation of MGNREGA Scheme.




After Noori, Kashmir scientists planning to clone Hangul

Firdous Hassan



Srinagar, Apr 25: After successfully cloning Pashmina goat in 2012, the Faculty of Veterinary Sciences and Animal Husbandry at SKUAST-K is now contemplating to make clone of Kashmir Stag (Hangul).

Realising that the Hangul was gradually getting extinct from the valley, the scientists at Department of Biotechnology SKUAST-K Shuhama came up with this idea.

“This project is in infancy as we require permission from Wild Life department, local government and Committee for the Purpose of Control and Supervision of Experiments on Animals (CPCSEA),” said Dr Riyaz Ahmad Shah, a veterinarian in the animal biotechnology center of SKUAST.


Shah said the execution of the project would require heavy funding and creation of the advanced infrastructure in the research centre.

“First of all a Deer park in needed where there these animals must have been already reared. Then advanced infrastructure is need as we currently have some basic machinery here. So overall this project can be only executed when the government is serious in accomplishing it,” he said.

He said the cloning could be achieved by using the body cells of some other inter-species including a goat or a sheep.

While the initial work including the framing of paper has been done, Shah said the tracing and catching this rare animal was becoming equally challenging for the concerned department.

“They usually die on being caught by the people. Still it could be managed but they are not being currently traced in abundance in the forests here,” he said.

 Shah believed that cloning of the deer can be an equally effective process like breeding procedure done to improve their population.

Official data reveals that population of Hangul has reduced to from 5,000 to 182 in last 118 years.

Department of Wildlife’s data shows the population of Kashmiri Hangul in 1900 was 5,000, spread over 65 miles from north to east of the Jhelum and lower Chenab valley.

The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) is also all set to declare it a ‘critically endangered’ species to protect this beautiful animal from disappearing from earth.

In 2012, scientists at Sher-e-Kashmir University of Agricultural Sciences and Technology (SKUAST) successfully cloned the first Pashmina goat. The healthy female goat was born using a foster mother and it took two years for standardisation of the technique.

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Assembly polls in JK: EC to convene meeting today




New Delhi, Apr 25: Election Commission of India (ECI) officials will meet on Friday to discuss assembly elections in Jammu and Kashmir.

Officials of the Jammu and Kashmir government are also expected to attend the meeting to assess whether the state assembly elections can be conducted in June this year.

While announcing the seven-phase Lok Sabha election schedule on March 10, Chief Election Commissioner Sunil Arora had said that elections for the Jammu and Kashmir assembly would not be conducted along with the Lok Sabha elections. In June 2018, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) had withdrawn support to the PDP, led by Mehbooba Mufti in the 87-member state assembly.


Since the fallout of the coalition government, the state has been under President’s rule.

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IT Dept searches premises of kin of ex-minister

Press Trust of India



Srinagar, Apr 25: The Income Tax Department Thursday carried out searches at two premises of a kin of Imran Reza Ansari, a former minister in the PDP-BJP coalition, for alleged tax evasion, officials said here.

They said the income tax officials, assisted by the Jammu and Kashmir police and the CRPF, carried out the searches at a business complex in the upmarket Karan Nagar where locations of North Point Complex were searched by the tax personnel.

Later, a team was sent to search another premises of the family at Alamgiri Bazar in the downtown Srinagar.


The income tax officials maintained that Thursday’s raids were carried out on a business family and were in no way connected to Ansari, a politician who switched over to People’s Conference led by Sajad Lone.

Ansari’s sister is married to the family whose premises have been raided.

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