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 28, 2011

The Hubris

Thanks to Raman, now we know that the University of Kashmir management would rather buy new luxury vehicles than grant scholarships to deserving candidates

(Mr. Raman Sharma, 26, was born in Jammu city. He received his schooling in the Sri Ranbir Memorial School, Jammu, and graduated in political science and sociology from the Jammu University. Mr. Sharma is a free lance journalist and a social activist who has filed over 500 Right to Information (RTI) applications with the Central and J&K governments.)

Kashmir University Purchases Vehicles Over Rs 2 cr in last 5 yrs: RTI

Srinagar: The University of Kashmir spent over Rs two crore in purchase of vehicles but provided financial assistance of only Rs 59.09 lakh as scholarships and fellowships to students over last five years, an RTI query has revealed. As per figures provided by the University, more than Rs 2.16 crore were spent on purchase of vehicles, most of which were luxurious SUVs for use by officials. However, the university has spent only Rs 59.09 lakh on scholarships and fellowships to students in last five years. Among the 36 vehicles bought by the University is a bullet-proof car purchased for Rs 9.25 lakh. The application was filed by RTI activist Raman Sharma.

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