Saturday, July 25, 2009

Omar seeks central support to harness hydel power potential

Dr. Abdullah announces series of multi crore energy oriented projects for J&K

1400 MW short term solar energy power projects earmarked

Highlighting the need for harnessing rich potential of non-conventional energy in the State, Chief Minister, Mr. Omar Abdullah Friday sought liberal technical and financial support from Union Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (N&RE).

The Chief Minister was heading the State team which deliberated the issues of utilizing State’s potential in the field with a high level team of N&RE Ministry led by Union Minister, Dr. Farooq Abdullah.

The Union team is here to study and assess the sectors and the areas were the union ministry could extend help to the State to utilize its potential of micro-hydel power generation and harnessing of solar, wind and other non-conventional energy.

Chief Minister said that State is fortunate that Dr. Farooq Abdullah is heading the Ministry of N&RE who has travelled all parts of the State more than anybody else and is himself aware of the potential and requirements of the State in this field. “Our remote areas of Gurez, Machhil, Drass, Kargil, Keran, Karnah, Leh, Zanskar, Kupwara, Baramulla, Bandipora, Ganderbal, Budgam, Anantnag, Shopian, Rajouri, Poonch, Reasi, Doda, Kishtwar, etc. could be benefitted to a large extent by utilizing the brooks, streams, small rivers, springs, water falls for generation of small hydel projects of 2 to 5 MWs”, Chief Minister said and sought Dr. Abdullah’s support in the regard.

Mr. Omar thanked the Union Minister and his team for visiting the State and offering schemes in the new field of N&RE. “We have the potential and you technical knowhow”, he said and urged the Union Ministry to help the State in opening a new windows in the non-conventional power generation in the State. He said that self-reliance in power generation is the priority concern of his government and every effort would be made to utilize all sources available in this field.

Chief Minister assured the Union Ministry that State Government will provide the required State share for the Central schemes to be extended to the State for its integrated and comprehensive development.

Extending fullest Centre support to the State in its endeavours of harnessing non-conventional energy sources Union Minister and former Chief Minister, Dr. Farooq Abdullah said that his ministry has identified 246 sites in the State where small hydel power projects could be launched successfully to generate 1400 MWs of power. “This would help the State to electrify remote and far-off villages within shortest period of time and utilizing comparatively very little costs”, he said and added that central ministry will provide financial as well as technical support to the State in this regard.

Dr. Abdullah said that his ministry intends to hand over setting up of 1000 micro-hydel projects under Prime Minister’s Reconstruction Plan (PMRP) to the State to harness hydel power potential in the remote and far-off areas. He asked the State to provide the status report of micro-hydel projects established in the State so far so that a decision in this regard could be taken.

Dr. Abdullah said that his ministry has also sanctioned electrification of 68 villages in Anantnag, Budgam, Shopian, Kulgam and Ganderbal under Remote Village Electrification Programme. He asked the State to submit proposal for more 140 such villages to the union ministry for funding.

Dr. Abdullah said that N&RE ministry will also extend help in the electrification of heritage sites, mughal gardens, streets, parks, Government Complexes and other such places and sought a detailed proposal from the State in this regard.

The Union Secretary N&RE, Mr. Deepak Gupta made a PowerPoint presentation in the meeting and identified sectors and schemes whereunder State Government could get benefits for harnessing micro, small hydel energy and non-conventional energy sources.

Speaking in the meeting, Minister for CAPD and Transport, Mr. Qamar Ali Akhnoon emphasized the need for utilizing the great potential of Leh and Kargil districts in the generation of non-conventional energy.

Principal Secretary Power Development Department, Mr. B. R. Sharma and Principal Secretary Science and Technology, Mr. Arun Kumar also made presentations in the meeting.

Elaborating on the preparedness of the State to launch new projects under N&RE supported schemes, Chief Secretary, Mr. S. S. Kapur said that both Power Development and Science and Technology Departments have been geared up to at all levels to take up the responsibility and deliver on ground. The meeting was attended by the Minster for Science and Technology, Aga Syed Ruhullah, Minister of State for Forests, Environment and Ecology, Mr. Shabir Ahmad Khan, Political Advisor to Chief Minister, Mr. Davender Singh Rana and other senior officers from the Centre and State participated in the meeting.

60,000 crore loss suffered by Kashmir during last 4000 hartals in two decades had cost each individual Kashmir Rs 20 lakh loss

Mysteriously only few hundred families prospered and attained old zamindari status

Repeated hartal system during peak summer period helped other tourist states to attract tourist who were earlier destined to visit Kashmir

The recent survey which has been conducted by reliable media agencies have revealed that Kashmir Valley has suffered heavily on economic front as a result of average 120 hartals per year which is estimated as 4000 hartals till date during the last two decades. The survey has further revealed that some mysterious hands are working as immediately on the onset of the summer season in Kashmir the entire tourist related activities are brought to an halt, which directly benefits the other tourist states whose tourist arrival graph has gone very high.

Earlier, it was not only tourist trade people who were getting directly benefited on the arrival of lakhs of tourist in Kashmir but transport industry, auto/sumo driver, handicraft industry, floriculture industry, Zaffron industry, were also receiving direct benefit particularly in summer season. The survey has revealed that those tradesmen who were associated with tourist trade, hotel industry, houseboat industry, handicraft industry and carpet industry two decades before in Kashmir are presently suffering on economic front and majority of them have come below poverty line, while as on the other hand according to the survey the tourist associated people in other states who were comparatively infancy stage two decades earlier are now running their own helicopter services and chain of the five star and three star hotels in these states.

The media survey has also revealed that during last two decades the few hundred specific families who were economically very poor two decades earlier in different parts of the Valley have accumulated mysteriously lot of riches and hundreds of kanals of land thus revived the status of being Zamindars in their respective areas. This abnormal economic reconfiguration which has emerged due to turmoil during last two decades according to survey has caused loss of rupees sixty thousand crore to the entire economy of Kashmir Valley and each individual Kashmiri has suffered loss of Rs 20 lakh.

The survey has also revealed that due to 4000 hartals each school going Kashmiri child from kindergarten upto University level has lost 20,000 precious class periods. This has resulted into educational chaos and reduced efficiency of schools, colleges and University going students.

The survey also revealed the disaster caused due to 4000 hartals have far reaching dimensions on other social, education, cultural, commercial, intellectual, philosophical, regional, scientific, sports and other sectors.