Centre considering ST status for Pahari people: Shabir

Minister of State for Power, Shabir Ahmed Khan addressing Pahari convention at Anantnag on Friday.
Minister of State for Power, Shabir Ahmed Khan addressing Pahari convention at Anantnag on Friday.

Excelsior Correspondent
SRINAGAR, June 15: Minister of State for Power, Forest, CA&PD and Transport, Shabir Ahmed Khan today said that grant of Schedule Tribe status to Pahari speaking people of the State is under active consideration of Centre , adding that the State Government has already submitted its recommendations to the Central Government in this regard .
Speaking at one day Pahari convention at Andoora Shangus in district Anantnag, the Minister said that Government under the leadership of Chief Minister, Omar Abdullah has taken several revolutionary measures for all-round development of Pahari speaking people. He said all the students of the community are getting scholarships, adding that opening of new educational institutions besides upgradation of existing ones in Pahari areas has received focused attention of the Government during last three years.
The one day Pahari convention was organized by J&K Pahari Welfare and Cultural Forum to highlight the demands of the community.
The Minister revealed that Government is formulating a revised plan under RGGVY to provide electricity facilities to leftover villages and hamlets, assuring that under this revised plan all the left over Pahari areas would also provided electricity facilities.
Responding to the demands of the locals, the Minister said the concerned authorities have been directed to formulate a DPR for construction of Receiving Station at Andoora, adding that Government has already given approval for construction of Receiving Station at Chirpora. He said this Receiving Station would be constructed at a cost of Rs.2.68 crore and work would be started soon.
Mr. Shabir said that the demand for repairs of Nowgam -Andoora road, plying of SRTC bus service up to Andoora would be taken with the concerned authorities for their early redressal. He said that forest authorities have already been directed to ensure distribution of timber among genuine consumers of the area on priority basis.
Earlier, the Minister inspected Nagdardi plantation nursery, where 1.50 lakh saplings of various plants species have been raised for plantation in vacant forest land. He also inspected medicinal plant nursery and instructed concerned to take all necessary measures for conservation and development of the nursery.

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