A Year of Excellences

It was a promising year for the state of Jammu and Kashmir with a good number of social workers, students, educationists, scientists, etc, making a mark by earning national and international recognitions, Sana Fazili and Ruwa Shah report.

As They Said…On one hand, you observe purdah and on the other, give our women make-up kits to beautify themselves. If you want to give them something, give them pen and paper. ”

Omar Abdullah said in his public rally at Ganderbal while campaigning for his panchayat candidates. He was later criticized by the women panchayat members over this statement.


A number of academics, literary persons, students and scientists from Jammu and Kashmir made the state proud with their achievements in 2012. Continuing with the trend set in the past, a number of scholars received scholarships and fellowships in international universities.

Muhammad Tahir, a post graduate in Peace and Conflict Studies from the Islamic University of Science and Technology (IUST) received a fellowship from the International University of Japan. Pursuing International Relations Program (IRP) with specialisation in International Peace Studies, Tahir is one of the six students selected for The Konosuke Matsushita Memorial Foundation (KMMF) scholarship.

It was a sort of record that was set in the field of law by three females this year who were appointed by the J&K High Court as District and Session Judges in direct quota. Shazia Tabasum, a resident of north Kashmir’s Baramulla district. Shazia graduated in law from the University of Kashmir. Born in a middle class family, she received her early education from Hanfia School, Ushkara and later joined St. Joseph’s School at Baramulla. Along with Tasleem Arief, a native of Srinagar and Sonia Gupta from Jammu, they broke the trend of a patriarchal society by qualifying the Higher Judiciary Examinations and making it to the highest seat of the court of law.

It was good news for the state from the field of science as well. As many as 10 scientists from Jammu and Kashmir were honoured at the 8th Science Congress which was held at Sher-i-Kashmir International Centre for Convocation from Sept 17-19 this year. The awardees included three females and seven male scientists. The scientists who were honoured include Dr. Reyazul Mir of SKUAST, Jammu in the field of Agriculture and Allied Sciences, Dr. Mubashir Masoodi of Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Kashmir University for his outstanding work on Kashmir’s medicinal plants along with others.

Mrs. Shaima, who is associated with the Department of Computer Sciences, NIT, Srinagar received an award for her contribution in the field of Mathematics, Statistics & Computer Sciences while Dr. Sunil Wanchoo of Shri Mata Vaishnu Devi University, Jammu was felicitated for his contribution to the field of Physical Sciences. Dr. Sandeep Dogra of GMC, Jammu, was awarded for his contribution to Health & Medical Sciences while Dr. Firdous Khanday of Kashmir University and Dr. Parvinder Kumar of University of Jammu were awarded for their contribution to life sciences. Dr. Muzamil Jan of Kashmir University and Dr. Monika Gupta of Jammu University also received awards for their contribution to Home/Social Sciences and Chemical sciences respectively.

People associated with the field of literature in Jammu and Kashmir too were acclaimed and, in many cases, were recognized with awards and meritorious certificates. Makhan Lal Kanwal, Abdul Ahad Hajini and Farooq Shaheen are set to be honoured by Sahitiya Akademi council for their outstanding contribution to Kashmiri language. Makhan Lal Kanwal would be honoured for his poetry collection ‘Yeth Angnas Manz’. Hajini would receive the award for his translation work ‘Tyoth Pazar’. The Yuva Puruskar in Kashmiri has been bagged by young Kashmiri poet and critic, Farooq Shaheen, for his book ‘Gash-e-Malar’. The award comprising of a cash prize memento and citation would be presented to these top notch literary personalities at a national-level function to be held in New Delhi in February 2013.

In the field of social sciences, Nighat Shafi, 61, who has been addressing the pain and trauma of conflict-affected people over the last 20 years received the Jamnalal Bajaj award. The award function was held in Mumbai and by bagging the award Nighat has become the first Kashmiri woman to have the honours.

Apart from the field of academics, sports personalities too emerged as good doers of the state. Hilal Rasool Parray became the first Kashmiri to be selected as the football coach by FIFA (Federation international de Football Association). Hilal is one of the two Kashmiri coaches who have got an ‘A’ license from the Asian Football Confederation (AFC). In India, there are only 47 ‘A’ license bearing coaches.



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