Monday, December 24, 2012

Ancient Shiva Cave Discovered in Reasi

An ancient Lord Shiva cave has been discovered on the high mountain near Thanpal in Salal area of district Reasi.

The area is tough terrain and nearly 2 hour on foot journey along Surman ‘Khud’. The villagers with their efforts managed to make narrow track up to the cave which is on the steep rocky mountain. On one side there is Salal dam and on the other at high mountain this cave.

The locals said that this cave was inaccessible due to its location but as they used to hear some kind of sounds from that area, nobody ever dared to go that side. A daring youth of the area namely Sunil Kumar, son of Paras Ram, armed with gun and assisted by 2-3 more youth, managed to reach up to the cave using ropes and his mountaineering skills. He saw a Shiva Lingam, stone idols of Shiva family, a statue of Saint and Hanuman. The cave appears to be almost equal to that of Shiv Khori. After this, the youth returned and told this matter to the whole village.

The next day, the village Sarpanch and some locals started digging track on the rocky mountain and with in few days they managed to reach there and saw the cave. They saw ‘Pindis’ and a big Shiva Lingam. The villagers narrated the matter to the local MLA and district administration. On their request, some officers including DC also visited the cave last week and they were astonished to see such a wonderful cave. They assured to develop the area and the cave for pilgrimage on the pattern of Shiv Khori.

There are two different routes one via Talwara-Siar Baba and Thanpal using boat over Salal dam and another one via Reasi Salal and yet another one via Bidda Dhayangarh Dam site.

Friday, December 14, 2012

Goa Arts and Literary Festival Begins

Giving detailed introduction of Kashmiriyat, Chief Minister, Omar Abdullah today said that Jammu and Kashmir represents a great civilization that nurtured pluralistic ethos, cultural diversity, brotherhood, universal d├ętente and mutual love.

"The captivating natural beauty, cultural diversity in unity and rich heritage of Jammu and Kashmir has been unique brand and blend of this State", he said adding that artists, writers, poets and artisans with magical skills have made their mark internationally.

Addressing the inaugural function of 3rd Annual Goa Arts and Literary Festival at Kala Academy here, the Chief Minister said that Jammu and Kashmir has been land of art, culture, literature, folk, music and handicrafts. He said this speciality of the State has added colour to its bio-diversity and natural beauty. He said the highest degree of hospitality inherent in the people of this place has also earned name and fame to this place.

Highlighting the richness of Jammu and Kashmir in offering wide-ranging and diverse tourism attraction round the year to tourists, travellers, trekkers, skiers, golfers, adventure lovers and sportsperson, Omar Abdullah said that Kashmir globally known as 'Heaven on Earth' is on path to restore the tourism sheen which received heavy setback during the period of disturbance.

"Peace is rooting fast and this year State received about 12 lakh visitors, over 6 lakh Amarnath Yatris and lakhs of pilgrims of Mata Vaishno Devi", he said, adding the perception about the law and order situation and travelling to this part of the country is undergoing paradigm shift towards positivity.

"We have underlined the visit of lakhs of tourists here an economic activity and is being promoted in this perspective", he said adding that the efforts of the State Government to change the perception of people in their minds regarding visiting Jammu and Kashmir have yielded good results. "After Japan and Germany, Britain has also modified its negative advisory for the citizens regarding visiting Jammu and Kashmir. We hope other countries will also follow the suit", he added.

Omar Abdullah congratulated the organizers of the festival and said that the participation of artists and literary persons besides a group of folk artists from Jammu and Kashmir in Goa festival gives him great pleasure.

The Chief Minister also referred to the great sufi-saints, historians, travellers and scholars of high eminence, adding that their preaching and teachings have had great impact in the development of a tolerant society in the State. He said the secular characteristic and amity between various sections of the society has been trait of the people in this part of the country. He said that this trait has sustained all challenges and defeated onslaughts and attempts aimed at disturbing it.

He expressed the hope that this characteristic of the State will get further strengthened with the passage of time.

The Goa Arts and Literary Festival is a regular gathering of writers, poets, literature experts, painters, artists, readers, etc at the International Centre Goa.

A folk dance group of Jammu and Kashmir is also performing in the Festival besides participation by 12 literary persons.

Jammu Srinagar NH closed for traffic

Parts of Kashmir Valley experienced the first snowfall of the season overnight, including the Jawahar Tunnel area forcing closure of the Jammu-Srinagar national highway.

The officials said here that the Srinagar–Jammu National highway is closed due to snowfall at Jawahar Tunnel and other places. Efforts are being made by Chief Engineer, Beacon, to clear the snow and re-open the road.

The officials said that the depth of snow recorded at various places this morning is: “Jawahar Tunnel 10 inches, Verinag 4 inches to 5 inches, Kokernag 3 inches to 5 inches, Pahalgam 5 inches, Anantnag 1 inch, Kulgam 3 inches, DH Pora one feet, Shopian one feet, Sedow one to one and a half feet, Gulmarg around 2 feet, Tangmarg 6 inches, Kupwara 3 inches, Lolab 4 inches to 5inches, Gund 6 inches, Gagangir 7 inches to 8 inches, Sonamarg 7inches, Ganderbal 1 inch, Baramulla 2 inches, Rafiabad 5 inches, Srinagar one inch, Bandipora 2 inches, Handwara 2 inches, Pulwama 3 inches.

The officials said that the Chief Engineer, Mechanical Engineering Department Kashmir started snow clearance operation in many areas of the Valley, where snow death exceeded 4 inches, including Gulmarg-Tangmarg Road, Verinag, Pahalgam, Kulgam, Shopian-Sedow, Ganderbal-Babanagri, Kupwara.

The Gulmarg-Tangmarg road has been re-opened for vehicular traffic, but only vehicles with 4x4 or anti-skid chains fitted on tyres are being allowed between Tangmarg and Gulmarg.