Kashmiri students on ‘mission’ know the nation

February 9th, 2012 - 6:50 pm ICT by IANS  

P. Chidambaram New Delhi, Feb 9 (IANS) For most of them, it was their first experience of travelling beyond the 2.5-km-long Jawahar tunnel through the Pir Panjal mountain range which links the Kashmir Valley with the rest of India.

And when 160 students, whose families have been affected by militancy in the state, did, the journey beyond the tunnel and to different parts of India was a trip of a lifetime.

The group of students, in the age group of 15 to 24, is on a home ministry-sponsored trip “Mission Watan Ko Jano” that took them to Gujarat, Maharashtra and Delhi.

On their way back, they met New and Renewable Energy Minister Farooq Abdullah at his residence in the capital Thursday. And during their brief stay in Delhi they will also be meeting Home Minister P. Chidambaram at his North Block office Friday.

The minister called upon the young students from his state to follow the path of “truth, righteousness and secularism”.

Abdullah, the chief of the ruling National Conference in the state, shared with them the progress India has made in the fields of education, technology, sports, art and culture.

“He asked them to take advantage of the vast opportunities available in the field of education and sports in the country,” according to a statement from the minister’s office.

His son and Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah was also present when the students were interacting with the senior Abdullah.

He laid special emphasis on energy saving and said it was “important to conserve the natural resources for sustainable development”.

Abdullah said such tours for Kashmiri youth, particularly affected by militancy- related violence, help them in understanding the world around them.

He hoped that more such programmes would be undertaken in future.

The students also narrated the experiences they had during their visit to different parts of the country and vowed to contribute in the progress of their state.

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