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Reading Zones of SPS, SRS Libraries to remain open from 9 am to 5 pm: Dir Libraries

Srinagar, Dec 31: Responding to the persistent demand of the students and other library users, the Department of Libraries & Research has decided to keep the Reading Zones in SPS Library Srinagar and SRS Library Jammu open beyond official working hours.

“Reading Zone of SRS Library Jammu and SPS Library Srinagar shall remain open on all working days except gazetted holidays from 9.00 am to 5.00 pm observing COVID-19 protocol,” said a circular issued by Director, Libraries & Research, Mohammad Rafi.

In a separate order, the Director, Libraries & Research has ordered that the Reading Rooms of District Library Srinagar and City Central Library be made operational immediately to facilitate the readers.

Pertinently, there has been an overwhelming demand from library users for keeping the Reading Zones open beyond official working hours.

The issue had been flagged by the readers through the Hon’ble Lt Governor’s Grievance Cell and was also raised by them with the Secretary to the Govt, Department of Culture, Sarmad Hafeez and District Development Commissioner, Srinagar, Dr Shahid Choudhary during their recent visit to the SPS Library.

The Department of Libraries & Research has embarked on a plan of action to reinvent the role of public libraries in J&K by offering Career Guidance and Information Services to the students through the vast network of libraries spread across the UT.

“Due to the cut-throat competition and overflow of information in the fast-changing academic and career scenario, it is very important to provide the right information to the right user and public libraries can play a critical role in guiding the students with right career options,” said Director, Libraries & Research regarding the new initiative.

He said the Department has a network of around 140 public libraries spread across the nook and corner of J&K and these libraries will be repositioned as Career Guidance Centres to facilitate the students with reliable information about admissions in academic and professional colleges/universities, scholarships, fellowships and job opportunities. “We have embarked on a program to build the requisite infrastructure in the libraries pertaining to student needs with the focus on e-resources,” he said and added that to begin with around 300 reference books and 50 prestigious journals/magazines are being provided in SPS Library Srinagar and SRS Library Jammu to help students prepare for various competitive examinations. This, he said, will be a value-addition to the already mandated responsibilities of the public libraries.

The Director Libraries said in the next step, IT hubs are being set up at both SPS and SRS Library to conduct virtual career guidance sessions/classes for students in collaboration with prestigious academic and professional institutions in the country. He said the Department will also install digital display boards in the Reading Zones of these libraries to provide real-time updates to the students regarding college/university admissions, academic courses, scholarships/fellowship and job opportunities.

Mr Rafi said that the Librarians would be imparted the requisite training in dissemination of career guidance information, job opportunities information in ICT environment and the libraries would be provided with updated collections relating to career development of students.  He said the Department will team up with professional library organizations outside J&K to adopt the best practices in order to turn the public libraries in J&K into vibrant institutions of learning and information dissemination.

He said the Department will be also inviting Career Counsellors and Subject Experts to impart key tips to students on how to make right career choices and crack various competitive examinations including civil services, NEET/JEE/CAT/CLAT etc.

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Pregnant woman killed, 2 injured as srinagar-bound ambulance meets with an accident in Ramban

(Asian News Hub) – An expecting woman got killed and two other persons received injuries after an ambulance they were on board met with an accident in Batote in Ramban district on Saturday afternoon.

Reports said that the ambulance driver purportedly lost control over the vehicle, enroute to SKIMS Srinagar from Doda. The vehicle rolled down a deep gorge, resulting in on spot death of a pregnant woman besides injuries to two other persons – said to attendants of the (now deceased) woman.

The identification of deceased woman or injured duo could not be immediately known.


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BSF, Pak Rangers resolve to maintain peace on border in first meeting after Ceasefire

Meeting held on Islamabad’s request, lodged strong protest over Drone activities: BSF

(Asian News Hub) – Border guards of India and Pakistan on Saturday resolved to remain committed to each other to maintain peace and harmony at International Border in Jammu.

Border Security Forces (BSF) said that Sector Command level meeting, first after New Delhi and Islamabad decided on steadfast holding of ceasefire, was held on request of Pakistan Rangers on International Border in Suchetgarh area of the Jammu.

The BSF delegation was led by Surjit Singh, DIG, Border Security Force and Pakistan Rangers delegation was led by Brig Murad Hussain, sector commander Pakistan Rangers, Sialkot Sector , S P S Sandhu (DIG), a spokesman of the BSF, said in a statement cited by GNS.

“It was the first Sector Commander level meeting between two border guarding Forces, after declaration of cease fire agreement by DGMOs.”

“During meeting, Commanders of both the border guarding Forces, discussed various issues with main emphasis by BSF delegation on Pak Drone activities, (militant) activities by Pakistan from across the border, digging of tunnels by Pakistan and other issues related to Border management,” the spokesman said, adding, “A very strong protest was lodged by BSF delegates regarding drone activities by Pakistan authorities in Jammu area.”

The spokesman said both the forces “decided to re-energize instant communication between field Commanders, whenever required, to resolve the ops matters.”

“ Meeting was held in a cordial, positive and constructive atmosphere and both side agreed for expeditious implementation of the decisions taken in the earlier DG level talks and committed to each other to maintain peace and harmony at International Border,” he added.


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Arms licence racket; Searches carried out at 40 location in J-K, Delhi: CBI

(Asian News Hub) – The Central Bureau of Investigation on Saturday said that it conducted raids at around 40 locations including official and residential premises of certain IAS and KAS officers in a case related to Arms license racket in Jammu and Kashmir.

CBI today conducted searches at around 40 locations including Jammu, Srinagar, Udhampur, Rajouri, Anantnag, Baramulla, Delhi (at the official and residential premises of certain then public servants, including IAS, KAS officers, then DM, then ADM etc), around 20 gun houses, dealers in an on-going investigation of a case related to Arms licence racket.

CBI had registered two cases on the request of Jammu and Kashmir government and further notification from Government of India, and took over the investigation of FIR No. 18 of 2018 dated 17.05.2018 earlier registered at Police Station Vigilance Organisation Kashmir (VOK) and FIR No. 11 of 2018 dated 17.05.2018 of Police Station Vigilance Organisation Jammu (VOJ) on the allegations of bulk issuance of arms licenses in the erstwhile State of Jammu and Kashmir during the period 2012 to 2016.

CBI also collected documents pertaining to the issuance of said armed licences allegedly spread over 22 districts of J&K.

During investigation and scrutiny of documents, the role of certain gun dealers was found in connivance with the public servants i.e. the then DM and ADM of concerned District had allegedly issued such illegal arms licenses to the ineligible persons.

It was also alleged that the persons who got these licenses were not residents of the places from where the said arms licenses were issued.

Further investigation is going on.


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