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.

Friday, October 17, 2008

One For Our Agrarian Roots

Musavirr provides a friendly reminder that most Kashmiris live off the land

(Mr. Musavirr Wani, 27, was born in Srinagar and attened the Burn Hall School. He graduated from the Meerut University and joined the Kashmir Times as a reporter. Loves driving his car and surfing internet to seek out workshops and fellowships so that he can travel and present the true picture of Kashmir.)

Fruit show organized on the World Food Day

SRINAGAR: Division of Pomology organized Fruit show/ Exhibition cum awareness Programme on the occasion of world food day celebrated today wherein more than eighty cultivars of apple including five released cultivars, pear twelve cultivars, kiwi three cultivars, walnut thirty selection including two released cultivars, almond ten selections including four released cultivars and selections of chestnut samples and technologies developed so far were displayed for exhibition.

Department of Horticulture and JKHPMC also participated in the fruit show and installed their stalls. The fruit show/ exhibition were inaugurated by the Chief Guest Sonali Kumari, Principal Secretary Agricultural Production Department. Prof. Anwar Alam Vice Chancellor SKUAST-K presided over the function of awareness programme. All the officers of the university, deans, heads of departments and Development Departments were present on the occasion.

Welcoming the dignitaries Prof. F. A. Banday, head division of Pomology highlighted the importance of organizing fruit show/ exhibition and briefed the gathering about the achievements of division. He stressed upon the diversification which is the need of the hour and informed that five cultivars of apple, three cultivars of almond, two cultivars of walnut and one cultivar of hybrid peach has been released and the multiplication is going on and plant material has been made available to the farming community. Several varieties of apple, walnut and chestnut are in pipeline and will be released very soon.

Prof. A. R. Trag, director research in his remarks also highlighted the importance of research resulting in the release of several cultivars of apple, walnut, and almond for the benefit of farming community. He also stressed that farmers should adopt the policy of diversification.

Prof. G. M. Wani, Director Extension Education in his remarks informed the gathering that among three mandates of the University, Extension is the important mandate through which the technologies developed by the SKUAST-K are being disseminated to the farming community including the latest research findings. Extension has played a pivotal role in solving the field-oriented problems of the farmers. He stressed the importance of producing quality fruits.

Prof. Anwar Alam Vice Chancellor in his remarks highlighted the importance and organization of such type of shows in which the farmers themselves get acquainted with the research findings made by the university besides the technologies developed as "Seeing is believing". Prof. Anwar Alam also briefed the gathering about the highlights of the university and said that much attention is being given to redress the problems of the farming community.

Sonali Kumari, Principal Secretary Agriculture Production Department, appreciated the organization of such type of events as all the visiting farmers from all districts and other dignitaries got acquainted with the latest research findings and technologies developed by SKUAST-K. She appreciated the achievements made in boosting the production of fruit crops, as our economy is mostly dependent on this trade through which our state earns a lot of foreign exchange.

Farmers-Scientists interaction programme was also organized wherein the farmers discussed their problems with the scientists and on the spot solution was provided to the farmers. Orchardists and farmers from all the districts participated in the interface programme.

Prof. M.S. Wani presented vote of thanks to all the dignitaries of the university and other departments including farmers for their participation.

No comments: