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J&K has taken flight of development: Advisor Bhatnagar

03:33 AM Jan 27, 2024 IST | GK NEWS SERVICE
j k has taken flight of development  advisor bhatnagar

Srinagar, Jan 26: Advisor to Lieutenant Governor, Rajeev Rai Bhatnagar Friday said that every sector in Jammu and Kashmir had taken a flight of development.


Unfurling the national flag to mark the 75th Republic Day celebrations at Bakshi Stadium here, Advisor Bhatnagar said, “Jammu and Kashmir is witnessing massive development for the past 4 to 5 years. From the health sector to physical infrastructure, from seamless citizen-centric governance through digital means to improved service delivery to the public, every sector has taken a flight of development.”


He inspected the parade and took a salute from the contingents of J&K Police, J&K Armed Police, BSF, CRPF, SSB, ITBP, IRP, women contingents, Forest Protection Force, and NCC.

Addressing the gathering, Advisor Bhatnagar extended his heartwarming greetings to the people of J&K as well as members of the Army, paramilitary forces, and J&K-level Police forces for their contribution to maintaining the security and integrity of the country.


“This year our country is celebrating the day under the theme ‘India – Mother of Democracy’ and ‘Viksit Bharat’,” he said. “In 1950, the constitution of India came into effect. The constitution crafted under the visionary leadership of B R Ambedkar not only guaranteed fundamental rights and freedoms but also enshrined the values of justice, equality, and fraternity.”


Advisor Bhatnagar called upon the citizens that besides honouring the constitution, everyone should reaffirm their commitment to justice, liberty, equality, and fraternity and stand together against intolerance and discrimination, fostering an environment where every citizen could thrive, irrespective of caste, creed, or gender.


He said that in the face of global challenges, India had shown unwavering determination and from technological advancements to economic growth, the country was making strides on the international stage.


Advisor Bhatnagar highlighted that the economy of the country was progressing at a stable pace and that even in the face of difficult circumstances during the global financial downturn, the country’s performance was appreciable.

He said that robust public health infrastructure was essential for the progress of any developing nation and J&K was witnessing a massive push in the establishment of world-class healthcare facilities.

Advisor Bhatnagar said that two AIIMS, two state cancer institutes, and other advanced healthcare facilities were being established in J&K.

He also reflected on other achievements like the establishment of 5 new medical colleges at Rajouri, Kathua, Doda, Baramulla, and Anantnag which were functional from their buildings.

Advisor Bhatnagar said that the work on new GMC Udhampur and GMC Handwara had started and the first batch of MBBS classes started in both colleges with 100 students each starting from the current year, enhancing the MBBS seats to 1300.

He said that around 3000 health and wellness centres were operationalised in J&K so far.

Advisor Bhatnagar said that J&K received the bronze medal for significant achievement of more than 20 percent reduction compared with the baseline of 2015 in the TB incidence in J&K during the ‘One World TB Summit - World TB Day 2023’.

He said Pulwama and Anantnag received the district-level award for achieving TB-free district status for more than 80 percent reduction in the incidence of TB from the baseline of 2015 with Budgam having already been declared TB-free.

Advisor Bhatnagar also spoke at length about the road and other allied infrastructure developmental projects.

He said that road and bridge infrastructure projects were essential for the overall development of any region.

“Various flagship programmes and projects are in progress and some have been completed enhancing the overall transportation landscape across J&K,” Advisor Bhatnagar said.

He highlighted that under PMGSY, the Centre sanctioned 3453 projects under PMGSY-I and II for the construction of 19,049 km road length at an estimated cost of Rs 12,565 crore.

Advisor Bhatnagar said that 2107 habitations had already been connected by March 2023 and 12 habitations were connected during this year while the remaining 33 habitations are targeted to be connected by March 2024.

He also remarked that under the Rural Infrastructure Development Fund (RIDF) of NABARD, a record 1057 road and bridge projects for an amount of Rs 4550 crore had been sanctioned since 2019-20, which include 183 projects sanctioned during 2023-24 at Rs 913 crore.

Advisor Bhatnagar said that from 2017 to 2020 total macdamisation was 9252 km whereas from 2020 to 2023 total length achieved under macdamisation was 16,807 km.

He said that Jal Jeevan Mission (JJM), a flagship programme launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, was progressing smoothly across J&K and the Union territory had targeted to provide FHTCs by covering all its 18.70 lakh rural households with tap water connections capable of supplying water in adequate quantity.

Advisor Bhatnagar said that with the saturation of 14.11 lakh out of 18.70 lakh rural households with tap water connections, J&K crosses 75 percent coverage under the JJM and enters into the ‘high achievers’ category at the national level.

He said that the agriculture sector was witnessing a boom in J&K.

“Holistic Agriculture Development Programme (HADP) for agriculture launched in April 2023 has received overwhelming support from the farming community and in the last nine months, 50,000 applications from farmers and youth have been received on the Kisan Sathi portal of which 14,000 applications have been approved and these units are being established across J&K,” Advisor Bhatnagar said.

He said that the tourism industry was one of the most flourishing sectors in J&K.

“This Industry is playing a pivotal role in the social and economic development and transformation of all the regions of J&K as a significant population is engaged in the tourism industry directly or indirectly,” Advisor Bhatnagar said.

“The tourism sector in J&K has done exceptionally well and witnessed unprecedented growth in the year 2022 as more than 1.88 crore tourist visits have been recorded in J&K,” he said. “This phenomenal growth was also witnessed in Kashmir valley where total tourist visits were 26.7 lakh in the year 2022, which is more than double the previously recorded highest so far. This positive trend has continued during the current calendar year as more than 2 crore tourist visits have been recorded till December 7, 2023, which is the highest recorded tourist visits so far.”

Advisor Bhatnagar said that the number of foreign tourist visits had reached 51,297 till December 7, 2023, as against 17,611 in the year 2022 during the corresponding period marking a growth of roughly 200 percent.

He said that this growth had been achieved because of various policy initiatives, the creation of a conducive environment, facilities, aggressive publicity, and promotional campaigns undertaken by the J&K government.

Advisor Bhatnagar said that the Youth Services and Sports Department created robust sports infrastructure in all 20 districts of J&K with liberal funding by the Centre under PMDP, Khelo India schemes, and J&K’s Capex Budget.

He said that M A Stadium Jammu and Bakshi Stadium Srinagar has been converted into international-level cricket and football stadiums under PMDP besides the multipurpose indoor sports halls had been constructed in all 20 districts.

“Our Rakesh Kumar and Sheetal Devi won silver and gold medals in the individual category and won mixed team gold in archery in Para Asian Games 2023 at Guangzhou, China,” Advisor Bhatnagar said.

He said that it was a proud moment for J&K that Sheetal Devi was conferred with the Arjuna Award by the President of India, extending his best wishes to the daughter of the soil.

Advisor Bhatnagar also paid tributes to the soldiers who safeguard the borders, ensuring the sovereignty of the nation, highlighting that their sacrifices serve as a reminder of their duty to preserve the values enshrined in the constitution.

“I convey my special appreciation to our soldiers who guard our borders and are ready to make any sacrifice for the country. I also express my appreciation for all the brave soldiers of paramilitary forces and Police forces who provide internal security to their fellow citizens,” he said.

Advisor Bhatnagar also presented awards to winners of the best march past, the best cultural programme, and other categories.

Divisional Commissioner Kashmir, IGP Kashmir, Administrative Secretaries, and DC Srinagar were also present on the occasion.

A colourful cultural programme was presented by the artists of J&K Academy of Art Culture and Languages (JKAACL) as well as school and college students in the form of traditional Rouf, Band-e-Pather, and Dambali.