J&K all set to rename 75 schools and equal number of roads after martyrs

DCs directed to identify schools in Municipal Wards, villages
RATTAN SHARMA
JAMMU: To celebrate 75 years of India’s Independence, the Jammu and Kashmir’s administration is all set to rename 150 roads and government schools in the name of security forces who sacrificed their lives for the nation.
As a mark of respect, the Union Territory government has decided to rename 75 schools and 75 roads after unsung heroes and martyrs from the Police, Army and CRPF , official sources revealed.
As per reports, J&K Chief Secretary Dr Arun Kumar Mehta announced that the government is in the process of renaming as many as 75 schools and roads each.
This was revealed at a high-level meeting chaired by the Cabinet Secretary, Rajiv Gauba on August 4, to review the ongoing ‘Azadi Ka Amrut Mahotsav’ to celebrate 75 years of India’s Independence.
While apprising the meeting on the initiatives planned by the Government of Jammu & Kashmir, Mehta said as a mark of respect, 75 roads and 75 schools will be renamed after the local unsung heroes in J&K.
As part of this initiative, the Union Territory has also submitted a regional ‘Rajya Geet’ in Kashmiri and Dogri languages personifying J&K’s contributions and aspirations.
The process of renaming government schools has already set in motion as the Deputy Commissioners of Jammu, Doda, Reasi, Poonch, Rajouri, Kathua, Samba, Ramban, Kishtwar and Udhampur districts have been asked to identify government-run schools in villages and Municipality Wards to rename.
In this regard, a communiqué was issued by the Deputy Director (E&S) of Divisional Commissioner Jammu.
“As per the instruction received by the higher authority, I am directed to request Deputy Commissioners (DCs) of ten districts of Jammu division to identify such government schools in villages, Municipal Wards of the district that can be named after our Martyrs from Police, Army and Central Reserve Police Forces (CRPFs),” it reads.
The communiqué further suggests that a committee may be constituted at district levels to prepare the details after due verification. “Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP), Additional Deputy Commissioner (ADC), DPO or AC Panchayat representative of Army etcetera can be included in the committee to finalize the list at district level.”
As per the order, the list was to be forwarded by Deputy Commissioners to Divisional Commissioner’s office by or by or before August 5.
On August 4, Cabinet Secretary Rajiv Gauba asked the Union Territory to organize various commemoration activities for the event on five key themes of freedom struggle, ideas at 75, achievements at 75, actions at 75, and resolve at 75. These activities will aim at raising awareness on freedom movement and struggles; stories of unsung heroes and freedom fighters; key milestones during the freedom struggle; and the ideas that inspired the struggle for independence.
Earlier, the government had directed the students to write essays on the contribution of freedom fighters and unsung heroes of Jammu and Kashmir for a national level creative writing competition.
The Officer on Special Duty to Director School Education Kashmir in a communiqué had said that he was instructed to pass the directions to all government Head of Institutions (HoIs) to launch an essay writing competition in all districts on the topic contribution of freedom fighters and unsung heroes.
“Many martyrs have sacrificed their lives for the motherland. Why shouldn’t schools be named after them? Similarly, names should be given to other organizations such as parks, airports and universities,” said a BJP leader while expressing his views over the decision. “The Centre has already started doing this. Many cities have been named after people who ruled and enslaved us. Today, we are an independent country,” he stated.
Pertinent to mention that the BJP in 2019 had renamed stadiums and roads in Kashmir ruffling some feathers. Chenani-Nashri Tunnel was renamed after Shyama Prasad Mukherjee and the Sher-e-Kashmir Cricket Stadium to Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel Stadium.
In 2020, Srinagar Mayor Junaid Azim Mattu, had proposed renaming city chowks after prominent personalities, who lost lives during the 30-year-long terrorism. Proposals to change the name of Indira Gandhi Memorial Tulip Garden to Kashmir Tulip Garden were also made.
Earlier this year, the Punjab government had renamed 17 state-run schools after the “freedom fighters” of India.
The Punjab government, on Thursday, had announced that it has decided to rename 14 more schools in various districts of the state after freedom fighters and other renowned personalities to honour their achievements, contributions, and sacrifices for the nation.