Gujjars Demand Tribal University In Pir Panchal Belt In J&K

19 July 2009
The Hindu

Srinagar: An organisation working for the welfare of Gujjar community in Jammu and Kashmir today appealed to the Centre to establish a Tribal University in the Pir Panchal belt of Himalayas inorder to preserve and propagate the rich tribal art and culture. 'There is an urgent need to promote studies and research in tribal art, culture, tradition, language, medicine and forest-based economic activities. Only a tribal university can fulfill all these demands,' read a memorandum addressed to the Prime Minister and the HRD ministry. A copy of the memorandum signed by representatives of Scheduled Tribe communities in the state was released by National Secretary of Tribal Research and Cultural Foundation Javaid Rahi. The Tribals constitute a sizeable population of the State and Gujjars comprise 85 per cent of the Scheduled Tribe communities, Rahi said adding setting up of a university exclusively for promoting avenues for higher education and research facilities for the tribal population would trim down the feeling of discriminations among various tribal groups. 'We are also demanding that the seat of the University should accordingly be located at Pir Panchal area, which is a central point in the tribal region stretching between Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh,' Mr. Rahi said.