The Jammu and Kashmir government today said that innovative measures have been taken to make optimum use of Auqaf assets on commercial basis.
Replying to the Demand of Grants of Hajj and Auqaf Department in the Legislative Assembly today, Minister of State for Hajj and Auqaf, Syed Farooq Ahmed Andrabi said the functioning of the department is being streamlined on modern and scientific lines to make it a more vibrant and competitive organisation.
The minister said the shopping malls and other commercial assets, besides modern educational and health institutions are being established in the state out of Auqaf funds.
He said under the historical decision by former chief minister Mufti Mohammad Syed, four nursing colleges at Kishtwar, Jammu, Kot Bhalwal, Rajouri, besides two such colleges in Kashmir valley have started functioning where 300 students are undergoing training in different courses.
He informed the House that a boys' hostel was also established in Jammu where facilities for 120 college and university students are being provided.
The minister said that Auqaf has earned an income of Rs 59.48 crore from its assets during the past three years.
He said the department has undertaken rigorous exercise of conducting survey of Auqaf land measuring 23,750 acres across the state of which 12,000 acres of land has been notified, adding that efforts are on to notify the remaining Auqaf land.
He said in Jammu, 17.5 acres of land has been fenced, while around one acre has been utilised for parking facility at Gole Market, Gandhi Nagar.
The minister said under the Public Private Partnership (PPP), the Auqaf is constructing a mega shopping complex at Residency Road, Jammu at a cost of Rs 23 crore, adding the construction of Jamia Masjid at Talab Khatikan was taken up at a cost of Rs 20 crore.
He said construction of Rs 6 crore Eidgah Jamia Masjid Rajouri has been completed and the construction of shopping complex at Rajouri is nearing completion while four more shrines in Rajouri were brought under the control of Auqaf.
He said the Auqaf is providing Rs 2 crore grant-in-aid annually to Baba Ghulam Shah Badshah University and so far Rs 46 crore has been provided to the university.
Income from Baba Ghulam Shah Badshah (RA) shrine has increased to Rs two crore during last year, he said.
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