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LG inaugurates 5 projects, lays foundation stone for 18 others projects for Tribal community in Pulwama

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Says, Govt paying sustained attention to bring quality education to underprivileged neglected for decades

Srinagar: Jammu and Kashmir Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha on Monday said the administration is paying “sustained attention” to bring quality education to the underprivileged section of the society that was long deprived of its rights.

Sinha was in Pulwama district to lay foundation stones for projects worth over Rs 51 crore for the welfare of the tribal community.

He inaugurated a Model Tribal Transit Residential School, girls’ hostel and 18 other projects for the community.

“Sustained attention is being paid to ensure that quality education is brought within reach of people who were long deprived of their rights.

“New hostels, smart classes and a record number of scholarships for tribal students will open doors of economic prosperity and all-round development,” Sinha said.

These projects are a testimony to our commitment of social justice and equality, he added.

Sinha said today the prospects for the tribal community in Jammu and Kashmir are bright as a number of schemes have been launched for its benefit.

“Never before have tribal community prospects been as bright as they are today. Forest Rights Act, PM Van Dhan Yojna, healthcare, transport facility, hostels, tourist villages, skill development — every initiative has been aimed at ensuring progress of J&K in an equitable, fair and just manner,” he said.

Sinha alleged that since independence tribals in J and K were neglected and discriminated.

“Between 1976 and 2020, only 26 hostels were established for tribal students while 37 new hostels will be added by 2023. In last 21 months, steps have been taken to ensure empowerment of all marginalised and weaker groups,” he said.

On ensuring access to quality and affordable education for the children of tribal community, the Lt Governor said that the UT administration has reviewed the scholarships of the students at various levels and hiked the same across the board in line with the contemporary realities.

“For students associated with the seasonal schools, children up to middle school were still being given an annual scholarship of Rs 450 to 675. A committee was formed to examine this, and now this scholarship is being increased to Rs 2400 annually, which will directly benefit about 34,000 students. Similarly, the review of scholarship in higher education had not been done from 2012 onwards, and technical courses and post-graduate students also got only 30 thousand rupees annual scholarship. This is also being increased to Rs 60 to 80 thousand annually, which will benefit 12,000 youths of the tribal community,” h said.

Recalling his pledge to set up 100 smart schools in tribal areas in November last year, the Lt Governor said that in March this year, the task of converting all 100 schools into smart schools has been completed, which include six such schools in Pulwama that now possess same state-of-the-art facilities as available in the schools of big cities. The Tribal Affairs Department in association with the District Administration is also developing a Cluster Tribal Model Village in Pulwama at a cost of Rs 10 crore, he added.

The Lt Governor appreciated the efforts of Tribal Affairs Department for completing the construction of this Transit Residential School in Goripora at a cost of Rs.6.68 crores in record time. He said that another such residential school is being built in Shopian and apart from education facilities, both these residential schools will also have medical facility, sports facility, library, food and other facilities. In order to provide equal rights to girls in the field of education, the government has also established 100-bedded hostels for the girls of tribal community at a cost of Rs.3.06 crores, he added.

Sinha claimed that the rights of the weaker sections enshrined in the Constitution were denied for 70 years.

“Development benefits were not allowed to reach the last man in the queue. By removing divisive and discriminatory policies we have made all sections of community effective partners in process of development,” he said.

A Gujjar leader from Pulwama does the ceremonial Dastarbandi of LG, Manoj Sinha during a function as IGP Kashmir looks on. Photo/DIPR

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