Darbar Halted

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The annual Darbar move seems to have finally ended. The Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha two days ago said that through a complete transition to e-office, we have put an end to the practice of hundreds of years old ‘Durbar Move’, under which the Civil Secretariat and other ‘move offices’ function six months each in Srinagar and Jammu. He said Rs 200 crores will be saved annually by the government and that will be utilized for the welfare of deprived sections.

The annual Darbar move that was operational at summer capital Jammu for six months and later shifted to Srinagar capital for 6 more months of the year was under questioning for some time. Actually, people have been raising questions about its functioning at two different places.

When the harsh winters would arrive in Kashmir, the governing body that needed the most was flying to Jammu to bask in the sun. Similarly, when the scorching heat of Jammu would start troubling them in the middle of summer, the civil secretariat would shift to Kashmir to enjoy the pleasant weather.

In 1872, the then Maharaja Gulab Singh began the Darbar move for the extreme weather conditions and was alternatively operating from both Kashmir and Jammu region. Since then the practice continues though in the present times it has completely lost its relevance.

Till now no government in Jammu and Kashmir dared to halt the practice. But the Sinha led administration seems to have shown the way. According to him, the Darbar move is abolished since the technology has taken over the manual work.

He said with 100 pc e-governance implementation, the civil secretariat is functioning at both the places properly. The step is in the right direction and even the high court observation in the past said that no region can be deprived of governance for long six months when people need them the most.

Meanwhile, abolishing the Darbar move is not the end of all worries. It is the responsibility of the government now to look after those who have been affected economically with the abolition of practice.

In case the move stops permanently, some sectors in Jammu region like real estate and retail will suffer badly.  Hundreds of people associated with the businesses must be given a ray of hope and rehabilitated properly.

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