Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who was in Jammu and Kashmir, today inaugurated the University of Ladakh, the first-ever varsity in the region. The Jammu region has four universities besides an IIT and an IIMC, while the Kashmir Valley has three universities and a National Institute of Technology (NIT). After the inauguration, PM Modi said Ladakh now has first cluster university comprising degree colleges of Leh, Kargil, Nubra, Zanskar, Drass, and Khaltsi.
The university will have administrative offices in Leh and Kargil, he added. On December 15, the Jammu and Kashmir administration had approved the establishment of the first university in the Ladakh region. PM Modi also laid foundation stones for various development projects, including an All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) and an Indian Institute of Mass Communication (IIMC), in Jammu.
PM Modi said setting up of new AIIMS would transform health care facilities and will also provide new opportunities to the youth. The people of Jammu protested for almost two months for setting up of AIIMS in the region. The National Conference (NC) and the Congress also staged demonstrations here in support of the demand.
The proposed AIIMS will be a 700-bedded hospital. The prime minister said Rs 750 crore has been granted to the state for setting up of five new medical colleges. "The sessions will start soon (in these medical colleges). From the last 70 years, there were only 500 (MBBS) seats, but the BJP government has now doubled the seats," PM Modi said.
He also laid the foundation stone for northern regional centre campus of IIMC in Jammu. It will be set up at a cost of Rs 16 crore. "It is a moment of pride for us that Prime Minister Narendra Modi has laid the foundation for IIMC campus here," said IIMC Director General K G Suresh. In addition, 15 acres of land has already been earmarked for setting up of a permanent campus in Kotbalwal area of Jammu city, he said.
The prime minister laid the foundation stone for 624-MW Kiru hydroelectric project in Kishtwar. It is a run-of-the-river project across the Chenab and once completed, it will generate 2272 million units of electricity annually. He inaugurated the 9-MW Dah hydroelectric project. Located in Dah near village Datang, this project is a run-of-the-river scheme.
PM Modi also dedicated to the nation the 220-KV Srinagar-Alusteng-Drass-Kargil-Leh transmission system. The foundation stone of the prestigious project was laid by Modi in August 2014. He laid the foundation stone for 1,640-metre span double-lane bridge over the Chenab river in Sajwal.