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Kashmir prepares schools to open front against drug abuse

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Srinagar: Directorate of School Education Kashmir (DSEK) on Wednesday asked all the educational institutes to come up with anti-drug committees to aware the students.
Director School Education, Ghulam Nabi Itoo, believes that awareness programmes at the school-level would “alert” the students about the risks associated with drug-abuse and give them confidence to fight it.
“I have asked every institute, private as well as government, to form committees before March. And I do not want this to be taken lightly,” Itoo told The Kashmir Monitor.
“I want the students to be aware of the physical and mental effects of taking drugs. This is a serious issue, and it needed to be addressed.”
As per Itoo, the principal of the institutes will be heading the committees, with assistance from physical education teachers, zoology lecturers, and class monitors.
The anti-drug committees would conduct events like debates, lectures, class talks, skits, anti-drug slogans, painting competitions, seminars from experts, poster making, and events of the same kind, on the weekly or fortnightly basis as per the institute’s convenience.
According to a survey conducted by United Nations Drug Control Programme (UNDCP), till 2008, there were around 70,000 drug addicts in Kashmir division alone, including 4,000 women, of which 65% to 70% were students.
As per the government psychiatric disease hospital’s statistics, 90% abusers belong to the age group of 17 to 35 years, with a lifetime prevalence of drug addiction.
The stats say that there has been an 85% increase in the number of drug and substance abuse cases, from 410 in 2014 to 759 in 2016.
Kashmir’s noted educationist and psychologist, Dr GN Madhosh, lauded the initiative taken by the DSE and is hopeful of a “positive” outcome.
“Over the years, the numbers of drug addicts has been just increasing, and it’s sad to see that,” he said.
“Such initiatives will make the students aware from the early age, and I am sure this will tone down the wildly increasing numbers of drug consumers,” believes Madhosh.


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Kashmir

Coming up of new parties, alliances dangerous for Kashmir: Experts

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Srinagar, Jun 19: The coming up of new political parties and alliances ahead of assembly polls can be dangerous for Kashmir as it will lead to the fractured mandate, thereby favouring BJP, experts claim.

On Tuesday former bureaucrat Shah Faesal and independent legislator from Langate Er Abdul Rasheed announced “Peoples United Front” for upcoming assembly polls.

Political pundits, however, believe that the fractured mandate led by such alliances in the upcoming assembly polls was aimed to divide Kashmiris.

 

“It is a very dangerous approach and Kashmiris should not allow the fractured mandate. Those who care about Kashmir should support one party of unit instead of paving way for fractured mandate due to these alliances,” said noted academician and an expert in politics, Sidiq Wahid.

The formation of new political alliances, he said, was a “policy of Government of India for a decade to divide Kashmiris.”

 “I really feel that this new so-called alliance that has been formed is mudding the waters,” Wahid said.

Another expert in politics, Prof Gul Mohammad Wani, said the suspicions and doubts among people will intensify when centres rule is extends its rule to the state.

“Even after holding Panchayat, Municipal election or parliamentary polls either, the government doesn’t seem to be in a mood to hold assembly election in the state as of now,” he said.

Wani however said the emergence of new alliances could be due to failures by the political parties “to allow internal democracy in the state.”

“Mostly leaders or new groups emerge or come out of the existing political parties under such circumstances,” he said.

Wani said that the existing political parties including NC, PDP and Congress require increasing ideological and political space to build credible leadership.

Soon after the formation of new PUF, former chief minister and National Conference Vice President Omar Abdullah said the alliance was aimed to divide voters in Kashmir.

He questioned about lack of such alliances in Jammu or Ladakh regions of the state. 

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Srinagar, Sonawari, Awantipora prone to floods: Study

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Srinagar, June 19: Jammu and Kashmir has witnessed abrupt changes in climate over the years. According to a disaster management report, 13 districts in J&K, out of 100 districts in India, have been identified as ‘multi-hazard districts’.

“Majority areas of the valley, especially Sonawari, Awantipora and Srinagar, along with parts of Jammu are prone to floods. Upper catchments of all the tributaries of the Jhelum, Indus, Chenab and Tawi rivers are prone to flash floods,” the report said. All these areas were worst hit by September-2014 floods and are prone to floods.

While the recent study says that out of the 12 states, Assam, Mizoram and Jammu & Kashmir are extremely vulnerable to global warming.

 

“Based on this assessment, the vulnerability index is found to be the highest for Assam (0.72) and Mizoram (0.71), followed by Jammu and Kashmir (0.62), Manipur (0.59), Meghalaya and West Bengal (both 0.58), Nagaland (0.57), Himachal Pradesh and Tripura (0.51 both), Arunachal Pradesh (0.47) and Uttarakhand (0.45). Sikkim is the least vulnerable state with the index being 0.42,” the study says.

It says that, “Several drivers of vulnerability are evident for the state of J&K. These include, in the order of significance, least road density, no area under crop insurance, low area under forests per 1,000 rural households, high percentage of marginal farmers, low percentage area under horticulture crops, low livestock to human ratio and low percentage of women in the overall workforce.”

The study says that climate change is already occurring and impacting natural ecosystems and human societies.

It says, “To reduce these uncertainties and plan towards sustainable development it is essential to adopt evidence based adaptation planning in IHR. This requires an in-depth understanding of the key risks and vulnerabilities derived from scientific assessments.”

The study has been authored by IIT Guwahati Anamika Barua Associate Professor Deptt. of Humanities and Social Science Principal Investigator Rupam Bhaduri Research Scholar Centre for the Environment Vishaka Gulati Research Scholar Deptt. of Humanities and Social Sciences IIT Mandi Shyamasree Dasgupta Assistant Professor School of Humanities and Social Sciences Co – Principal Investigator Kritishnu Sanyal Project Associate School of Humanities and Social Sciences Mir Khursheed Alam Research Scholar School of Humanities and Social Sciences IISc Bangalore N.H. Ravindranath Professor Centre for Sustainable Technologies (CST) Key Resource Person Indu K Murthy Consultant Scientist Centre for Sustainable Technologies Tashina Esteves Research Associate Jagmohan Sharma Additional Principal Chief Conservator of Forests (Forest Conservation) Government of Karnataka.

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Massive reshuffle in police, civil admin likely after June 27

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Srinagar, Jun 19: A massive reshuffle in civil and police administration is likely to be ordered anytime after June 27 when the ongoing “Back to village” program launched by Governor’s administration across Jammu and Kashmir will come to an end.

Authoritative sources said that exercise for a massive reshuffle in civil and police administration has been set into motion with the proposals being processed for transfer of senior IAS and IPS officers holding key positions in the state administration. The proposals for deputation of several senior IAS and IPS officers and return of some others from central deputation to Jammu and Kashmir government have been set into motion.

In the likely reshuffle in civil and police administration several administrative secretaries are likely to be relieved of the additional charge of some key departments which they are overseeing presently in addition to their own duties.

 

The reshuffle could be ordered phase wise to dispel the impression about the working of some non-performing officers presently holding key positions as directors of some key departments and deputy commissioners of districts in all the three regions Kashmir, Jammu and Ladakh.

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