J&K's Doda district will now be known for Lavender, says Jitendra Singh
08 March 2022
Lavender has been designated as brand product of Kashmir’s Doda district, which is also the birthplace of India's Purple Revolution (Aroma Mission), union minister and MP from Udhampur-Kathua-Doda Lok Sabha constituency, Dr Jitendra Singh, said.
The minister said lavender can be promoted under ‘One District, One Product’ initiative of the Modi government to attract agri- start-ups, entrepreneurs and farmers.
Dr Jitendra Singh disclosed this while chairing the District Development Coordination and Monitoring Committee (DISHA) meetings of Doda and Kishtwar districts.
He also said the Khilani-Goha-Sudhmahadev national highway, linking Kalota and Humbal, and the National High Altitude Medicinal Plant Bhaderwah will become functional early next year in Doda district.
Singh said the Khilani-Goha-Sudhmahadev national highway, which is providing crucial connectivity and employment in the region, could not have been possible without the personal intervention of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Similarly, the Rattle Project, which along with Pakkal-Dul project and Kiru project will make the entire region power-surplus, was put on hold by the earlier government but has been revived on the intervention of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
The minister maintained that CSIR-IIIM’s Aroma Mission is providing means of livelihood to budding farmers and agri-technocrats and promoting the spirit of entrepreneurship, giving a boost to the `Start-Up India’ campaign. Regarding the purple revolution, Singh emphasised that awareness/beneficiary programmes should be organised in Doda, Jammu and other districts and later in the rest of the country to showcase the lucrative aspects of lavender cultivation so that start-ups under the Aroma Mission could be encouraged. This would also enhance the image of Doda district, which is the birthplace of India’s Purple Revolution.
The minister also said that the government is taking various initiatives to improve forward and backward linkages for lavender production and various options of marketing are being explored for which deliberations with various industry partners are underway.
Jitendra Singh also stressed on the importance of branding of the products under ‘One District, One Product’ initiative with innovative themes so that holistic development of the district is ensured.
Singh also informed that the Goha Khilani National Highway Project will be completed in early 2022-23, while the National Institute of High Altitude Medicinal Plant will be functional in March next year, paving way for developmental activities in the district with strides towards ease of living and providing livelihood.
He said the recently launched 'Sansad Khel Spardha' must emphasise on ‘One Sport, One District’ initiative so that the traditional sports having cultural links with the district and/or showcasing talent in the local sports would be encouraged under it. Dr Singh also said that the local sports talent in J&K would now be explored under 'Sansad Khel Spardha' providing sportspersons the opportunities to compete at Panchayat level, district level and UT level. He further said that sports was no longer just an entertainment or a leisure activity but being actively chosen as a career.
Under Digital Health Mission as announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the minister said that ‘Doctor on Wheels' started from Doda has been very successful, especially in its far-flung areas providing 'telemedicine’ services using the latest technology and consulting with super speciality doctors from different parts of the country.
Dr Singh stressed that coordination meetings must be conducted every third month of the year so that constructive inputs may be taken from the elected representatives of the district for follow-up and plugging of loopholes in the implementation.
He also informed that the all-weather, Chattergala Tunnel connecting Kathua and Doda districts via Bani-Basholi will be included under Bharat Mala Project Phase-II.
Dr Singh also chaired the District Development Coordination & Monitoring Committee (DISHA) meeting of Kishtwar district. During the meeting, Dr Singh informed that the Ratle Hydropower Project that was earlier stalled from last eight years by the earlier governments has been restarted by the present government as a joint venture between NHPC and JKSPDC. He further informed that Kishtwar is going to become the hub of hydroelectricity with 1,000 MW Pakal Dul Hydropower project, 624 MW Kiru Hydropower project and revived Ratle Hydropower Project that will make the entire Jammu and Kashmir power surplus in future.
The minister also said that under the Udaan Scheme, an airstrip would be constructed in Kishtwar district, an Ayurvedic hospital has been built in the district while degree colleges have ben established even in far-flung areas like Padder.
Dr Singh while reviewing the functioning of various central government schemes, mentioned that the DISHA platform gives an opportunity to elected representatives and executive to work together on various developmental issues for larger public interest. He said Prime Minister Narendra Modi has started very effective and well conceptualised schemes and to take full benefit of these schemes, it was important to bring to fore the loopholes or problems in implementation so that timely solutions can be worked out and projects may achieve the intended deadlines. Both the DISHA meetings were attended by the District Development Commissioners of Doda and Kishtwar, DDC chairpersons of Doda and Kishtawar, district Officials, DDC members, BDC members and Sarpanchs and Panchs of the districts.