Govt forms expert panel for new Admin Units

Srinagar: Jammu and Kashmir government on Tuesday constituted an expert committee headed by Financial Commissioner Industries and Commerce Department to examine the feasibility and demands for creation of new Administrative Units in the “left-out” pockets of the state.
Besides the chairman, the panel comprises Divisional Commissioner (in respect of Jammu and Kashmir divisions), Commissioner Secretary Revenue Department, concerned Deputy Commissioner (co-opted member) and Director Rural Development Department (in respect of Jammu and Kashmir respectively).
The Committee, serviced by the Revenue Department, has been asked to submit its report within two months “positively”, according to a government order.
Following the approval for setting up of 659 new Administrative Units in the state in February this year, there was growing demand from left-out areas from across the state for creation of more such units.
Subsequently, during the last Assembly Session in Jammu, Chief Minister Omar Abdullah on February 12 last had promised setting up of the expert committee. However, it took almost four months for the government to make a formal announcement.
The decision follows culmination of Parliamentary elections that saw the drubbing of ruling coalition of National Conference and Congress in the state.
In fact, two veterans of the coalition partners—NC patron Farooq Abdullah and Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad—had to bite the dust in the polls which were won by opposition PDP and BJP by getting equal share of the six seats in the Parliament.
Before the announcement of 659 new Administrative Units, a political storm brewed in the state for few weeks over the proposal to create them with National Conference refusing to budge from its stand in its favour while Congress and some others opposing it. At one point in time, Omar also threatened to resign after the state Congress leadership appeared to be stonewalling his “cherished” scheme of new Administrative Units ahead (now concluded) of Lok Sabha polls and ensuing Assembly elections in October-November this year.
46 sub-divisions, 135 tehsils, 177 CD blocks and 301 niabats, make the total of 659 Administrative Units, described as historic by both the alliance partners.