Introduction to Blog

I launched the website and the Blog after having spoken to government officials, political analysts and security experts specializing in South Asian affairs from three continents. The feedback was uniformly consistent. The bottom line is that when Kashmiris are suffering and the world has its own set of priorities, we need to find ways to help each other. We must be realistic, go beyond polemics and demagoguery, and propose innovative ideas that will bring peace, justice and prosperity in all of Jammu and Kashmir.

The author had two reasons to create this blog. First, it was to address the question that was being asked repeatedly, especially, by journalists and other observers in the U.S., U.K., and Canada, inquiring whether the Kashmiri society was concerned about social, cultural and environmental challenges in the valley given that only political upheaval and violence were reported or highlighted by media.

Second, the author has covered the entire spectrum of societal issues and challenges facing Kashmiri people over an 8-year period with the exception of politics given that politics gets all the exposure at the expense of REAL CHALLENGES that will likely result in irreversible degradation in the quality of life and the standard of living for future generations of Kashmiris to come.

The author stopped adding additional material to the Blog once it was felt that most, if not all, concerns, challenges and issues facing the Kashmiri society are cataloged in the Blog. There are over 1900 entries in the Blog and most commentaries include short biographical sketches of authors to bring readers close to the essence of Kashmir. Unfortunately, the 8-year assessment also indicates that neither Kashmiri civil society, nor intellectuals or political leadership have any inclination or enthusiasm in pursuing issues that do not coincide with their vested political agendas. What it means for the future of Kashmiri children and their children is unfathomable. But the evidence is all laid out.

This Blog is a reality check on Kashmir. It is a historical record of how Kashmir lost its way.

Vijay Sazawal, Ph.D.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Saving Nageen or Killing Nageen?

It remains to be seen if the Government is capable of protecting our dying lakes

Hi-tech resort at Nigeen to attract tourists

SRINAGAR: Tourism trade may be going through a rough phase these days but the department of tourism wishes to waste no time in developing new areas for attracting the tourists in near future.
According to a local news gathering agency a fresh idea in this direction has started to take shape on the banks of the famous Nigeen Lake in Srinagar.

The department has developed a tourist resort here so that tourists coming to Srinagar feel a new and added charm around this picturesque lake.

"Nigeen Lake was the preferred destination before the onset of militancy in the state. People especially the foreigners used to throng this place," deputy director department of tourism, TK Sadhoo told the news agency.

"We are making an effort to bring Nigeen back on the tourism map by developing it like it was twenty years back. Besides, a resort is scheduled to be completed on the banks of the Lake so that more and more tourists feel attracted to visit this place", added Sadhoo.
Situated on the banks of Nigeen Lake, this resort is believed to provide impetus to the ailing tourism industry in Kashmir.

Sprawling on an area of almost 15,570 sq. ft, this resort has all facilities of high class lodging.
"It is a full-fledged resort cum club and it houses an eight bedroom guest house, lobbies, card room, restaurant, billiards room, herbal massage centers, separate steam and sona bath parlors for men and women and a multipurpose hall", Sadhoo said.

The official said that department is trying to explore the medicinal value of Kashmiri herbs and is planning to use these herbs in the massage centers of this resort.
He said "The massage centers will use Kashmiri herbs and it will help us to grow economically as well."

According to the official department is planning to use the multipurpose hall as a banquet hall and has decided to throw it open to its members on concessional rates.
"We have devised membership mechanism to provide this hall to people on concession", added Sadoo.

He informed that the multi crore project has been completed in a record time of about six months and is expected to be functional from October this year.
"We started work on this project in April this year and it's complete by now", claimed T.K Sadhoo.

With International Airport coming up at Srinagar, this resort is expected to buzz with business soon but seeing the extravagance of this resort it seems that only a particular section of tourists can enjoy its facilities.

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