1,000 Youths Get Jobs Outside Valley
Bashaarat Masood (Indian Express)
Srinagar For more than a thousand youth, this is a dream opportunity to showcase their talent in the corporate sector. But as they prepare to step outside the Valley to work in different parts of the country, there are apprehensions and concerns about their safety — even by J-K Chief Minister Omar Abdullah.
A year after Prime Minister Manmohan Singh set up the Rangarajan Committee to roll out a job plan for Kashmir’s youth, 1,060 men and women, trained for various skills under project ‘Himayat’ (Support). The project is a training and placement programme for unemployed youth in the state initiated by the Union Ministry of Rural Development.
Adeeba of Srinagar, who has been appointed as customer service representative in Chandigarh, said: “They (government) not only trained us but also provided us with a job. This is the beginning of a new life for us.”
At a function at Kashmir University where the appointments letters were distributed, the youth and their parents were ecstatic. But when a parent said he will send his son outside the Valley only on the assurance of the Chief Minister, he expresses the fears of numerous others.
Omar, too, expressed concern and made an appeal to the government and people of other states. “Please stop looking at Kashmiris with suspicion. Every Kashmiri is not a militant; every Kashmiri does not want destruction. Most of the Kashmiris want to live a peaceful life and aspire for a good future.”
Union Minister for Rural Development Jairam Ramesh tried to allay the fears. “I think he (Omar Abdullah) has a point and we are looking into it,” Ramesh said on the sidelines of the function. “The whole idea is to bring the youth of Kashmir into the mainstream and break the stereotypes.”
Under ‘Himayat’, one lakh youth from poor families will be given training, over next three to five years, and then employed in private sector across the country.