Jammu, Feb 5: Minister for Tribal Affairs Choudhary Zulfkar Ali today said that various steps have been taken for the holistic development of the tribal population of the state.
The Minister was replying to a discussion allowed by chairman legislative council, Haji Anayat Ali on a starred question of Surinder Kumar Choudhary and raised on his behalf by Saif-ud-Din Bhat in the House today.
“The Government is committed to the inclusive development of the tribal community and raise their living standard for which various schemes have been introduced,” Zulfkar said.
“Special Ration Cards will be prepared and issued to the nomadic families under PHH category thereby entitling them for rations under NFSA & MMSFES,” he informed the House adding that directions have been issued to the district administration to identify all such beneficiaries at an earliest.
To promote education among ST students, Zulfkar said that 05 Eklavya Model Residential Schools (EMRS) have been sanctioned for Anantnag, Kulgam, Rajouri, Kargil and Poonch districts.
He informed that each co-education EMRS has an intake capacity of 500 students who will be provided lodging and boarding facilities free of cost.
The Minister further informed the house that 23 boys and girls ST/G&B Hostels are currently functional in the state with an intake capacity of 2125 students, while work on 20 new G&B Hostels involving a cost of Rs 26 crore is apace at various places.
He said the government has also proposed to convert six hostels in Kupwara, Bandipora, Kathua, Poonch and Doda into residential schools, at a cost of Rs 12.50 crore.
“For the year 2017-18, Rs 13.61 crore was provided under Pre-Matric Scholarship to the Gujjar & Bakerwal students,” he said.
The Minister informed that 1100 ST students (50 from each district) will be trained in Paramedical Courses under Skill Development initiative during the current financial year.
He further informed that 17 new Cluster Tribal Villages have been sanctioned and Rs 10 crore has been earmarked for each cluster. The Minister assured the Chairman of Legislative Council that Traspoon, Salaskot, Gund Mougal Pour will be included in the list of cluster villages.
He said that other initiatives include construction of shelter sheds at an estimated cost of Rs 1.58 crore on migratory routes for the benefits of the nomadic populace of the state.
Earlier, Legislators Zafar Iqbal Manhas, Pradeep Sharma, Khursheed Aalam, Vibod Gupta, Firdous Ahmad Tak, GL Raina and Sajad Ahmad Kichloo took part in the discussion and gave their valuable suggestion for the development of the tribal community of the state.