Kishtwar to get Air Connectivity, Govt signs MoU with Army to operationalize Airstrip


Jammu: The Government of Jammu & Kashmir and Army Monday signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for development and operationalization of Airstrip in Kishtwar.

Brig. Vikram Bhan, Commander, 9 Sector RR and S.Katoch, Commissioner Civil Aviation signed the MoU in the presence of Lieutenant Governor, Manoj Sinha and Dr. Jitendra Singh, MoS PMO, Ministry of Personnel, Public Grievances and Pensions, Department of Atomic Energy, Space, Ministry of Development of North Eastern Region (through video conferencing) here at the Raj Bhavan.

BVR Subrahmanyam, Chief Secretary; Nitishwar Kumar Principal Secretary to Lt Governor; Sanjeev Verma, Divisional Commissioner, Jammu; M Raju, Secretary to the Government, Civil Aviation Departments, Achal Sethi, Secretary to Government, Department of Law, Justice & Parliamentary Affairs and other senior officers were present on the occasion.

Lt Gen. YK Joshi, GoC-in C Northern Command; Lt Gen. Harsha Gupta, GoC 16 Corps; Col. Rajneesh Giri, and Col. AK Panwar represented the Indian Army.

The Lt Governor observed that the Airstrip would provide a vital connectivity to the Kishtwar District to benefit both Defence personnel and Civilians, even during the severe winter conditions and for medical & other emergencies, besides giving a fillip to the socio-economic development of the region.

Pertinently, the issue of operationalizing the airstrip was pending since 2018.

As a result of commitment and perseverance of the government, the district, which lies at more than 210 km’s from the nearest airport in Jammu, has been provided with the golden opportunity to mitigate the sufferings of the people through the ambitious project, he added.

Highlighting the benefits of developing Airstrip at Kishtwar, the Lt Governor observed that the said project is aimed to benefit around 2,50,000 people of Kishtwar district.

The Lt Governor hoped that the project would deliver the desired results like increasing per capita earnings in district, owing to higher tourists influx which will facilitate better and quick transport facility through operationalization of airstrip; Better Health Indicator (HDI)-low mortality rates- the speedy and crucial transfer of patient to better equipped Jammu hospital will be possible and this will reduce the time taken to travel from 08 hours to less than 30 minutes; Better monitoring and administration of the district-the reduction in travelling time (for frequent meetings in Jammu) will leave officers of the district with more time to spare for the public and Integration of people with the main land, large parts of district remain out of bounds for the normal people, even the residents find it difficult to commute from such far flung areas.

The meeting was informed that in November,2017, under UDAN (Ude Desh Ka Aaam Nagrik) Phase-II Regional connectivity scheme launched by Government of India that aims to make unserved / underserved airports in small cities operational with regular flights and other subsidized airfares to encourage more people to fly, Kishtwar district of UT was included among 24 other districts

86,961 new COVID-19 cases in India, tally reaches 54,87,580; death toll mounts to 87,8821

New Delhi: India’s COVID-19 tally reached 54.88 lakh with 86,961 people being infected in the past 24 hours, while 43,96,399 people have recuperated so far pushing the national recovery rate to 80.12 per cent on Sunday, according to the Union Health Ministry data.

The total coronavirus cases mounted to 54,87,580, while the death toll climbed to 87,882 with the infection claiming 1,130 lives in a span of 24 hours in the country, the data updated at 8 am showed.

The COVID-19 case fatality rate due to coronavirus has further declined to 1.6 per cent. There are 10,03,299 active cases in the country as of now, which comprises 18.28 per cent of the total caseload, the data stated.

According to the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR), a cumulative total of 6,43,92,594 samples have been tested up to September 20, with 7,31,534 samples being tested on Monday.


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