Chief Minister, Mufti Mohammad Sayeed, Wednesday, said his government will continue to break new grounds in development, which will translate into greater economic benefits to the citizens at the grassroots’ level.
He said innovative ways will be found for development financing, enabling creation of durable physical assets in various sectors of the economy.
The Chief Minister made these observations during a extensive tour of South Kashmir district of Anantnag. He inaugurated new projects including state-of-the-art Auditorium at Government Boys Degree College (GDC) Anantnag, bridges over Brungi Nullah at Lalan Ganoor and Hanjidanter and a footbridge at Duggapora (Batpora), near Khanabal.
He also laid foundation stone of a bridge over Brungi Nullah near Bang-e-Nowgam, Roohu, being constructed by Rural Development Department.
Minister for Horticulture, Haj & Auqaf, A. R. Veeri, Minister for Rural Development, Abdul Haq Khan and Legislators, Farooq Andrabi and Abdul Rahim Rather were also present on the occasion.
The Chief Minister first inaugurated auditorium building at GDC Anantnag, which has been built at a cost of Rs.5.99 crore. The 600-seated auditorium is equipped with latest acoustics and audio-visual systems as well as automated curtains.
Referring to the recent decision of the government to upgrade colleges to the level of Cluster Universities, Mufti Sayeed said the government will take steps to transform satellite campuses of premier universities of the state into full-fledged universities. “Our college campuses need to become hotbeds of placements where corporate firms come to hunt for talented human resource,” he said, while highlighting the need to lend credence to almost 16 precious years of life that a student invests in his education before becoming eligible for a job.
Drawing the attention of the impressive gathering towards diversity in academics, Mufti Sayeed said the government will start market-driven courses which will enable our talented youth to enhance their employability. He advised students to make optimal use of the facility (auditorium) which can bring into limelight the talent of our youth in dramatics, art and debates.
Laying emphasis on skill-based training, the Chief Minister asked Principal of the college, Dr. M. Y Peerzada, to submit a proposal for establishing a ‘School of Skills’ for which adequate funds could be earmarked. “We need to teach youth traditional skills in papier machie, carpet and shawl weaving as well as demand-driven segments like automobile engineering,” he stated.
The Cabinet recently approved proposal to start Skill Development Mission in four broad sectors including handicraft and agriculture-based industries to enhance skill of youth.
During the inauguration of the three bridges, Mufti Sayeed issued instructions for fast-tracking flood protection measures, especially on the embankments of river Jhelum and Brungi Nullah, out of the funds provided in the recently-announced development package.
Nearly four lakh people living in isolated rural pockets of Anantnag district will be benefited by opening of the three bridges inaugurated by the Chief Minister at Lalan Ganoor, Hanjidanter and Duggapora (Batpora) today.
The 2×25-metre-long steel girder Lalan Ganoor bridge has been constructed at a cost of Rs.3.10 crore. It will provide connectivity to nearly two lakh people of habitations like Chirhama, Chichripora, Papibal, Furrah and Ashajipora with Anantnag.
The other steel-girder Hanjidanter bridge, constructed at a cost of Rs. 2.08 crore, will link villages like Danter, Bangider, Janglat Mandi, Moughall, Ruh, Kamed, Gundijaffer, Naidkhun and Pushwara.
The footbridge near Duggapora has been constructed at a cost of Rs. 1.87 crore and will provide connectivity to a large population with Khanabal town.
Earlier, the Chief Minister also inspected the ongoing work on the new 300-bedded District Hospital at Anantnag, being executed by JKPCC at a cost of Rs.59 crore. He was informed that the work on the project has been speeded up and will be completed by August next year.
The project, on which work was started in 2007, has missed several deadlines in the past.
The Chief Minister also laid foundation stone of a bridge being constructed over Brungi Nullah near Bang-e-Nowgam by Rural Development. The work on the project will be executed by JKPCC and is expected to be completed next year.
Also present were former Minister and PDP Chief Spokesman, Dr. Mehboob Beg, former legislators and senior PDP leaders, Rafi Ahmad Mir and Peer Mansoor, PDP South Kashmir Coordinator, Mufti Sajad, Director Rural Development, Kashmir, Tassaduq Jeelani, Deputy Commissioner, Anantnag, Muneer-ul-Islam, Chief Engineer, R&B, Kashmir, Satish Razdan, MD JKPCC, Dalip Thussu and District PDP President, Advocate Javed.