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.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Thank God, Something is Finally Going Right

JK Handicraft Corp achieves 83% target

Srinagar: The J&K Handicrafts (Sales and Export) Corporation Limited has set up a sales target of Rs 1386.50 lakhs for the current financial year. The corporation has achieved 83 per cent of the sales target in the first eight months as goods worth Rs 589.00 lakhs have been sold against target of Rs 715.00 lakhs. Revenue generation of the corporation has also increased.

This was disclosed at the 113th meeting of board of directors of the corporation held on December 1 under the chairmanship of H H Tyabji, advisor to governor, J&K.

The board observed that the Corporation has shown steady growth in business over last few years and has potential of self-sustenance. Board introduced sales incentives scheme for its employees. Renovation of Corporation showrooms at Delhi, Kolkotta and Mumbai was decided to be got done in phased manner.

In-country and overseas exhibitions/crafts Bazaars of handicrafts by the Corporation were also approved. The Board also approved opening of new branches at Gurgaon, Hyderabad and Ahmedabad.

Present among others were S L Bhat, Financial Commissioner, Planning and Development Department, Additional Secretary to Government Industries and Commerce Department, Director General Budget, Finance Department and Director Handicrafts. G W Wani Managing Director of the Corporation briefed the meeting about performance of the Corporation for the year 2007-08 and target performance for the year 2008-09.

(Greater Kashmir)

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