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, August 13, 2010

Suffering Economy

Sajad describes businesses which will never catch up, resulting in more unemployment and hence more misery

(Mr. Sajad Kralyari, 28, was born in Kralyar, Srinagar. He had his early schooling at the General Public Mission (GPM) School, and his higher secondary education from the Government High School. He completed his B.Sc. from the Gandhi Memorial College, Rainawari, Srinagar, and Master's degree in journalism from the Media Educational Research Centre (MERC), University of Kashmir in 2008. He subsequently did a brief stint in New Delhi before returning as a correspondent for the Rising Kashmir, working on business and economy related stories.)

Wounded Paradise: A day’s breather ‘no biz’ for luxury goods

Srinagar: As the new calendar of protests issued by the separatist leadership allows for working day on Tuesday, traders and business entities dealing in electronic and luxury goods are not optimistic of brisk business.

One working day a week doesn’t give much relief to dealers of luxury and high end goods as people are interested to buy only essential commodities.

“We don’t even make a 5 per cent sale of what we witness on a normal day. People are not interested to buy electronic goods in this situation. These are luxury items, which are not a priority for the people at this time of crisis,” said the owner of an electronics goods outlet Khurshid Ahmad at Hari Singh High Street.

Even the marriage season, which is at its peak, has failed to push demand for apparels. “The garments have also witnessed dip in sales. Even the ongoing marriage season has not helped us,” said an apparel distributor Mohammad Yaseen Khan.

With the month of Ramadan already approaching, the garment outlets see no immediate relief. “There are no marriages during the holy month of Ramadan. We don’t expect people to buy garment. Further, the cancellation of marriages has further hit our sales,” said Khan.

Even though traders are willing to offer rebates on these items, people prefer to pay extra money only to stock more quantities of essential commodities.

The normal day in a week has led to panic buying of only essential commodities with no price control.

“The situation is uncertain and people are interested to only stockpile essential commodities. They are ready to pay any price on this normal day,” said President Federation Chambers of Industries Kashmir (FCIK) Shakeel Qalander.

The shoppers are also willing to pay any price to stock food items.

“The marriage ceremonies are not a priority as of now. We have lost interest in luxurious goods. I have delayed my plan to paint my house, which I was had planned earlier,” Riyaz Ahamd Bhat from Khanyar said.

No comments: