SRINAGAR: Continuing his consistent outreach programmes as part of the ongoing Back to Village-3, Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha visited Kud in Udhampur district on Wednesday.
“Back to Village is a revolution for implementation of maximum governance on the ground. In Back to Village, the public is planner and executor while the government and officers are only facilitators,” remarked the Lt Governor while addressing the public.
He called upon the public to wholeheartedly participate in the Back to Village programme and ‘be a part in the development and restructuring of J&K’.
Taking cognizance of long pending demand of Chenani-Patangarh bridge over Tawi, the Lt Governor assured that a double-lane modern steel superstructure bridge would be completed by July, next year benefiting about 15 Panchayats. ‘The 5 km approach road to the bridge would also be completed along with the project’, he added.
‘Back to Village and Jan Abhiyan is a step towards more transparent and accountable governance. Funds, Functions and Functionaries are now available at your doorstep. At the same time, awareness also needs to be created in the public about people’s rights and welfare schemes that centre and UT administration has already approved for them’, he continued.
“Each district has been provided funds of Rs 2.5 crore and additional Rs 10 lakh for Back to Village works. There is a need to work with honesty and dedication for utilization of these funds and execution of works,” said the Lt Governor.
Discussing the agriculture sector, the Lt Governor observed the need to modernize, industrialize and diversify it to strengthen village economies and providing ample sources of livelihood to young generation.
“Jammu & Kashmir needs a different kind of green revolution focusing on livelihoods diversification through allied activities. I’m working on many farmer friendly initiatives to ensure a more rapid, holistic agricultural development in Jammu Kashmir,” the Lt Governor maintained. He made a special mention of project Jeevika which has led to a new approach of integrated and remunerative farming in the clusters where the project is being implemented.
The Lt Governor spoke on Prime Minister’s visionary Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchai Yojana and how it is going to benefit the district through implementation of measures like micro-irrigation. He also called for creation of 300 clusters of organic farming in the district and for revival of water resources and revamping water supply for agriculture and horticulture sectors.
The Lt Governor highlighted the need to deliver benefits of social security schemes to large rural population of the district. ‘More than 32 thousand people from 236 panchayats of Udhampur have benefitted from Integrated Social Security schemes’, the Lt Governor noted. He also expressed the need to speed up Aadhaar seeding with pension beneficiaries, the existing figures being 70% only.
The Lt Governor appreciated the huge number of scholarships given during Jan Abhiyaan and said that 14908 Pre-Matric while 566 Post-Matric scholarships have been provided in the district during the period.
Appreciating the progress achieved by the district in health sector, the Lt Governor also stressed on the need to expedite work on recently approved new medical college within set deadlines.
Summarizing achievements of ongoing Back to Village programme, the Lt Governor announced that 1.79 lakh beneficiaries have been linked with Jammu & Kashmir Health Insurance Scheme, 65 thousand farmers have been provided Kisan Credit Card, 1.55 lakh ration cards have been seeded with Aadhar and more than 55 thousand farmers have benefitted under PM KISAN initiative.
He also asked the elected PRI members to generate awareness for the benefit of the local population. Every Wednesday is dedicated to public grievance redressal at Sub-Division level on rotation basis, he added.
“It is heartening to know that school enrollment in the district has increased over the past years; 3 new colleges are coming up while 4 others are already operational. It should be our collective responsibility to reduce the school drop out rate in the district,” said the Lt Governor. He complimented the District Administration for ‘Back to School’ initiative which has led to resumption of studies for school dropouts.
Discussions have already been held with Vice Chancellors and other educationists of J&K for ground implementation of the New Education Policy in the UT which would help evolve education sector here.
“Special attention is being given to modernization and vocational training in education sector in villages. I am working on development of digital teaching-learning resources; talent spotting and their handholding at school level; and improving quality and fixing accountability of the teaching staff”, said the Lt Governor.
Tourism has high growth potential in Udhampur and could be one of the largest employment generators in this district’, observed the Lt Governor. ‘I am working on a strategic plan for tourism sector in Jammu Kashmir and I am sure with the help of institutional mechanism, we can increase highest employment of workforce in this sector and majority of them would be from our villages.
“Administration should immediately start working on development of tourism sector in the district. It has enough potential in the form of heritage sites as well as religious and adventure tourism”, said the Lt Governor. He later sought DPR for development of Dudu, Basantgardh, Sanasar, Nathatop, Sudhmahadev and Mansar Lake in tourism sector. He also directed for identification of villages to be developed as Tourist Villages.
The Lt Governor announced that work on International Yoga Centre at Mantalai is apace and the same shall be completed by next year. Once completed, the project would take the area to new heights, the Lt Governor maintained.
The Lt Governor also called for identification of suitable areas for production of high density apple in the district.
Addressing the youth, the Lt Governor said, “Under Skill India, 522 youngsters have been provided jobs, while another 510 are getting trained for jobs. With enough motivations, more youth would be facilitated under the schemes”.
The Lt Governor said, that during Back to Village-3, two youth are to be selected and helped to become entrepreneurs with handholding and financial assistance. He told that Special Desks have been setup in J&K Bank branches to guide and facilitate such youth. Similarly, sports kits have been provided to each panchayat according to interests of the local youth, he informed.
Highlighting the achievements of earlier phases of Back to Village programme, the Lt Governor said that many youth were engaged in cultivation of cash crops like vegetable and bamboo in addition to loom craft. He also informed the public about the Aloevera Processing Unit installed in the district to help encourage local entrepreneurs.
Speaking on village sanitation, the Lt Governor said that all panchayats have been asked to install two separate garbage bins- one for solid and the other for liquid waste, and engage two sanitation workers under MGNREGA.
The Lt Governor mentioned that the Government has recently, announced special economic package for J&K and said that very soon a ‘historic industrial package’ is expected to be announced under which investments worth more than 25 thousand crore would be made in the UT.
He also called upon the officers to generate awareness about all 54 public related schemes being run by the government in J&K.
The Lt Governor while inspecting the stalls established by different departments highlighting schemes and products of their respective departments, interacted with the officers and took stock of the progress of these schemes on ground.
Earlier, Deputy Commissioner Dr Piyush Singla briefed the Lt Governor of the district’s achievements and the schemes being run by the district administration.
Prominent among others, present on the occasion were Sh. BVR Subrahmanyam, Chief Secretary; Sanjeev Verma, Divisional Commissioner, Jammu; Mukesh Singh, IG Jammu; Sujit Kumar, DIG Udhampur-Reasi Range; Dr Piyush Singla, Deputy Commissioner, Udhampur; Sargun Shukla, SSP Udhampur; PRI representatives, HoD’s and other senior officers.