Gigantic expansion taking place in next six months: Omar

Trungal (Doda) –With elections only a year away, Chief Minister, Omar Abdullah Sunday said a gigantic expansion programme in health and education sector was in offing and will be realized within next six months.

“Within next six to eight months you will see a huge programme on ground regarding expansion of health and educational institutions”, he told a public gathering at Trungal a remote area in Asar Block of Doda District.

The Chief Minister was addressing a public meeting after inaugurating Rs. 15 crore 325 metre Span Suspension Bridge over river Chenab at Trungal in District Doda.

Omar Abdullah said that road communication especially to link up far-flung and remote areas with main highways is receiving priority attention. “In fact my government has flagged this aspect as one of the most important concerns in the State’s development policy. It is as a result of this policy that State has witnessed remarkable improvement and upgradation in the road communication sector during the last about five years”, he said and added that thousands of kilometers of roads have been upgraded and newly constructed besides constructing hundreds of bridges all across the State. He said the programme is continuing and will see further fillip during this year.

The Chief Minister said that economic upliftment of remote areas and employment generation for youth largely depends on the status of connectivity and road communication. He said better roads buttress development and economy and bridges engulf the economic gaps. He said reaching out to people in remote areas on the development front is also linked with communication facilities. He said recognizing this aspect his government is vigorously implementing a gigantic roads and bridges development programme in the State.

Referring to the tourism potential of erstwhile District Doda, the Chief Minister said that in order to bring Trungal on tourist map of the State measures would be taken to encourage water sports in the lake here and youth would be trained to start programmes for water skiing, kayaking, para-gliding and adventure tourism in the area so that tourist from all over the world are attracted to this area to relish the natural beauty and take part in adventure sports activities.

The Chief Minister also stressed the need of utilizing the water body in the area as a means of transport as is prevalent in many similar lakes elsewhere. He said the water body in Trungal could be utilized as a good means of transport as is being done in Jhelum, Dal and Nageen Lakes. He said he would ask the tourism and other concerned departments to explore similar possibility here.

The Chief Minister announced launch of five kilometers road in the area so that the benefits of Trungal Bridge accrue to more villages. He said Trungal Bridge was initially designed as a foot bridge but on the demand of the area his government upgraded it to the status of motorable bridge and directed State Power Development Corporation for its construction as a motorable bridge. He said the people are also demanding motorable bridge instead of a foot bridge at Makdi Padi involving Rs. 27 crores. “We will examine the demand in its right perspective and consider it favourably”, he said.

The Chief Minister said that there is a need for many bridges in the area to link up cut-off areas and make these accessible easily, as such, his government would take up the task in hand and complete these bridges gradually.

The public meeting was also addressed by Minister of State for Power, Vikar Rasool, Legislators, Sajjad Ahmad Kitchloo, Najeeb Suharwordhy, Ashok Kumar, Sham Lal Bhagat and former Legislator Chaman Lal.

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