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Tribal Chair established at IIT Jammu, BGSBU Rajouri

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LG Lt confers first-ever UT level Tribal Awards, says Govt working for holistic development and empowerment of tribal communities

Srinagar, Jun 26: Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha today conferred the first-ever UT level Tribal Awards at SKICC, Srinagar and felicitated individuals and institutions for their exemplary services to tribal welfare and achievements in the field of sports, education, culture, literature and science and technology, an official press release informed.

“Extremely proud to have participated in the first-ever UT level Tribal Awards ceremony.  This initiative to acknowledge the achievements and services of the community will encourage many more to work for the welfare of others,” said the LG.

Highlighting the measures taken by the government for the welfare of the tribal community of J&K, the LG said that UT government is working tirelessly for the holistic development of tribal communities, promoting entrepreneurship amongst tribal youth and women, tribal schools being transformed, village development, tourism, ‘Van Dhan’ being implemented for their empowerment.

The LG also announced that 500 tribal youths will be trained under the Financial Literacy Programme proposed by Bombay Stock Exchange and Punjab National Bank.

“For the sustainable livelihood of the youth, the administration has set up mini sheep farms in the tribal areas. Efforts are being made to link the tribal youth with the dairy sector, besides programmes of skill development and vocational training have been launched to bring a large population into the mainstream economy,” the LG said.

After many years of wait, the Forest Rights Act was implemented by the government last year, he said, and added that the UT administration is setting up 100 Van Dhan Kendras in Jammu and Kashmir for sustainable livelihood of the tribal families.

The government is also starting 1500 Van Dhan Self Help Groups to make women of the tribal community financially independent and empowered, he further added.

On this historic occasion, MoUs were signed between Tribal Affairs Department and IIT Jammu and Baba Ghulam Shah Badshah University Rajouri for establishing Tribal Chair in both the institutes, the press release informed.

It said the LG termed the establishment of Tribal Chairs a milestone in academic research and preserving the cultural heritage of the tribal community.

“It will bridge the gap in research, institutional support. The collaboration will work towards preservation of rare books, language styles, socio-cultural heritage and most importantly, the documented history can be digitized,” he added.

The LG said that Tribal Research Institute in J&K is preserving tribal cultural heritage, felicitating outstanding achievers from tribal communities, identifying problems related to tribals, pursuing research activities for capacity building to fully realize their potential.

“Guided by the high ideals of ‘Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikas, Sabka Vishwas, Sabka Prayas’ of the Prime Minister, the UT administration is not only proudly appreciating the indispensable contribution of tribal society but also steadfastly moving towards establishing a new social order based on social equity and social harmony in the Azaadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav,” the LG observed.

“We have evolved an effective and comprehensive strategy, being executed at grassroots level for enhancing income of tribal families and providing life-fulfilling opportunities to youth, best possible medical care facilities and bringing each family under social security net,” the LG said.

He said for the first time in the history, ASHA health workers from the tribal community are being appointed to work for the health-care of the population living in the high pasture region during the summer season.

The government has launched a Tele-medicine scheme to reach out to tribal populations living in far flung areas with the services of specialist doctors. In addition to the Tribal Health Plan started last year, Tele-medicine and Mobile Medical Care Unit will bring much needed transformation in health care of tribal families, he noted.

The LG observed that in the last two years, the UT government has worked towards achieving the balanced development of infrastructure as well as the human resources through a host of unprecedented policy decisions, schemes and programmes.

Terming education as the most potent tool for the progress of tribal communities, the LG said the budget for scholarship has been increased to Rs 45 crore from last year’s Rs 31 crore.

Lauding the efforts of the officials of the Tribal Affairs department of the UT, the LG called upon the department to focus on convergence of all available welfare schemes so that maximum benefits are percolated at the grassroots level.

The LG also highlighted the recent launch of Pradhan Mantri Adi Adarsh Gram Yojana for rapid and inclusive development of tribal villages. He also urged the UT Tribal department to review programs related to climate action and initiate Annual Earth Care Awards, to be awarded for tribal community based performance.

Dr Arun Kumar Mehta, Chief Secretary, termed the occasion as a significant beginning to the new era for the development of Tribal community. The initiatives launched today were part of our endeavor to connect the tribal population with the mainstream of development, he added.

Dr Shahid Iqbal Choudhary, Secretary to the Government, Tribal Affairs department, highlighted various initiatives taken to empower the tribal community of Jammu & Kashmir.

The event also witnessed the inauguration and launch of various initiatives for the welfare of the tribal community including First edition of TRI Newsletter, Web-Portal of Tribal Research Institute, Tribal Helpline, State-of-the-Art Computer Lab, Skill Development Programme for tribal Vulnerable Groups, Tele-Consultation facility for migratory tribal population, smart survey app for nomadic tribal communities, and a  book titled ‘Khanabadosh’.

Later, the LG flagged off 41 ambulances for different cluster tribal villages.

Prof. Akbar Masood, Vice-Chancellor BGSBU; Deputy Commissioners from various Districts; PRI members; prominent citizens and members of Tribal Community in large numbers were present on the occasion.

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