Katra: Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha Wednesday said that necessary changes should be made in the syllabus as per the New Education Policy (NEP) and added that the government was working on the development and promotion of J&K’s spiritual tourism circuit.
An official spokesman in a statement issued here said that attending the celebration of the 37th foundation day of Mata Vaishno Devi Shrine Board (SMVDSB) and the 12th annual day of Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Gurukul, Charan Paduka, Katra at the Matrika Auditorium of Shri Mata Vaishno Devi University, the LG said that
it should be our endeavour that necessary changes should be made in the syllabus as per the NEP.
“In the last two years, we have tried to reshape the education system in J&K according to the NEP. Work has been done to develop all the institutions from the school to the university level as centers of change in consciousness. Today our youth are giving priority to service to society along with personal aspirations and that is a notable transformation after a long time,” he said. “We have launched several important initiatives in the last two years including the flagship programme 'Student-Teacher Mentorship' which is a revolutionary step towards enhancing learning outcomes by identifying the learning gaps.”
Laying the foundation stone of various projects of Shrine Board and Gurukul, including a new hostel for the expansion of Gurukul and accommodation facilities for Shrine Board’s employees at Ardhkuwari and Banganga, the LG while taking another significant welfare step for the employees of the Shrine Board announced hardship allowance for 1450 SMVDSB employees posted at higher altitudes.
He also rolled out a new RFID system for the convenience of the passengers.
“The system will ensure seamless access control with minimal hassle to devotees. For better crowd management and tracking of the yatris, 29 counters and control rooms have been set up in Katra and verification counters have been set up at seven locations on the track,” he said.
The LG said that the work on the Spiritual Theme Park would commence before the Navratras.
He congratulated all the members, stakeholders, and everyone associated with the Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Shrine Board and Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Gurukul for the foundation day.
Observing that Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Gurukul was the center of knowledge and wisdom, the LG said that the Gurukul was a perfect medium to develop future leaders who would be well accustomed to modern, traditional, and spiritual education.
” For the last 12 years, the Gurukul has been paving the way for the strong spiritual-cultural foundation of J&K. The affiliation of Gurukul with Central Sanskrit University, New Delhi is an important step towards the revival of Sanskrit in J&K and connecting students with science and spirituality,” he said. “At Gurukul, we must encourage original ideas among the students and nurture their minds so that they can learn higher values of life and dedicate themselves towards nation building.”
The LG said that in Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Gurukul also, the teachers would get an opportunity to radically change their teaching method by assessing the needs, capabilities, and interests of the students.
“It will also lead to commensurate changes to the syllabus to inculcate ideas based on future requirements,” he said.
The LG appreciated the efforts of the management for affiliation with the Central Sanskrit University and expansion of the Gurukul as far as student intake was concerned.
The LG also highlighted the measures undertaken to cater to the needs of 8 to 9 lakh devotees visiting Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Shrine every month.
“On this occasion, we must also remember the key role of Jagmohan ji, former Governor of erstwhile J&K in the constitution of SMVD Shrine Board,” he said. “Keeping in view the heavy rush of devotees, we are constantly improving the facilities to make their yatra hassle-free. In the last two years, new projects have been sanctioned for better facilities and resources and important steps have also been taken for crowd management at the holy shrine. The work on the skywalk will be completed by December.”
The LG said that the memorandum of understanding (MoU) between the National Highway Logistics Management Limited (NHLML) and Katra Development Authority that was inked on Tuesday would create one of its kind intermodal stations for the devotees bringing services like helipad, railway station, bus stand, auto stand, parking, five-star hotels, and other modern-day facilities at one place.
Enlisting a host of new initiatives taken for ensuring that yatris from all over the world get state-of-the-art facilities and further strengthening the linkage between the local economy and yatra, he said that the government was working on the development and promotion of the spiritual tourism circuit.
“Efforts are being made for conservation and revitalisation of spiritual cultural heritage and to bring prominent spiritual and religious places like Purmandal-Utterbehni, Mansar-Surinsar, and Shiv Khori on the religious tourism circuit of the country which would also generate livelihood opportunities for the locals, the LG said. “As many as 18 projects for the conservation of places with spiritual cultural importance have been started in Jammu, Kathua, Ramban, Reasi, Samba, and Udhampur which were neglected for years. After waiting for seven decades, all these sites will be restored and the surrounding infrastructure will also be developed and comprehensive and holistic development of the entire area will be ensured.”
He said that strict action should be taken as per the law against the culprits for alleged irregularities in the recruitment examination of the Sub-Inspector, Financial Account Assistant, and Junior Engineer.
“There were complaints of irregularities in the recruitment examination of Sub-Inspector, Financial Account Assistant, and Junior Engineer. The high-level committee investigated the allegations without delay and keeping in view the recommendation of the committee, the investigation of these three examinations has been handed over to the CBI,” the LG said. “I want to assure the youth that there will be no compromise on transparency and merit. Justice will be ensured, their ability and merit will be respected and strict action will be taken against all those elements who have unethically tried to harm the future of meritorious aspirants.”
Mahamandleshwar Shri Swami Vishveshvaranand Giriji Maharaj, member of Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Shrine Board and chairman of the governing council said that during a short span of 12 years since its establishment in 2010, the Gurukul had earned a name in imparting quality education in Sanskrit and other subjects and exuded confidence that very soon it would emerge as a centre of excellence.
Chief Secretary Arun Kumar Mehta acknowledged the unparalleled emotional connection with the shrine, lauded the achievements achieved so far, and emphasised the pleasant and hassle-free experience of the visiting yatris.
Chief Executive Officer, SMVDSB, Anshul Garg in his welcome address highlighted the initiatives taken under the guidance of the LG for facilitation of yatris initiated in a very short period by Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Shrine Board like mobile app, home delivery of Pooja Prasad, Panch Mewa Prasad, round the clock call centre for facilitation of yatris, installation of hi-tech video walls, construction of Durga Bhawan, e-library, yatri queue management (skywalk), underground cabling project and RFID project.
The principal of the Gurukul Dhananjay Mishra presented the annual report of the institution while students of the Gurukul staged a Sanskrit play ‘Bharat Vijayam’.
The LG felicitated the meritorious students who excelled in academics and various other extra-curricular activities during the past year.
He also released a book ‘Gurukulodayam’ tracing the foundation and evolution of Gurukul - an institute of Sanskrit Learning.
The LG also inaugurated a photo exhibition capturing yatri-centric services and social support interventions of the shrine board since 1986.
He also laid the e-foundation of a new dinning-cum-accommodation complex at SMVD Gurukul and Nature Interpretation Centre and seed bank at Kunia Nursery, Panthal.
A presentation of Bhagawati Stuti, Bhajan, a cultural programme by the students was among the main highlights of the event.
Members of the shrine board Baleshwar Rai, Ashok Bhan, Neelam Sareen, Suresh Kumar Sharma, Raghu K Mehta, Vice Chancellor Central Sanskrit University Delhi Prof Shrinivasa Varakhedi, VC SMVDU Prof Ravindra Kumar Sinha, and VC Central University Jammu Sanjeev Jain were present on the occasion.
Director SMVD Gurukul, Padma Shri Vishwamurti Shastri, ADGP Jammu Mukesh Singh, Divisional Commissioner Jammu Ramesh Kumar, and Deputy Commissioner Reasi Babila Rakwal also attended the function.