Jabeena Akhter, Jammu and Kashmir's first female wushu champion, wushu in jammu and kashmir, jammu and kashmir, wushu champion, women in wushu, women empowerment in jammu and kashmir

Jabeena Akhter: The Personification of Women Empowerment in Jammu and Kashmir

Over a period of time, women and girls in our beautiful Jammu and Kashmir have been able to witness and experience the joy of playing in a team or achieving a personal best in sports. Women like Ankita Raina and Afshan Ashiq have proved that their background, however troublesome, is in the past is not a hindrance for their future. And young girls like Tajammul Islam have proved that no matter the age, gender or background- sports are a medium of empowerment for everyone. Women and girlsa like them have made females performing in sports a common sight. Their achievements give us a chance to celebrate the rising number of females players in all the sports.


Meet and Greet Jabeena Akhter- Kashmir’s first female Wushu Champion

Jabeena Akhter, Jammu and Kashmir's first female wushu champion, wushu in jammu and kashmir, jammu and kashmir, wushu champion, women in wushu, women empowerment in jammu and kashmir

Let us all celebrate the achievements of Kashmir’s first female Wushu Champion, JABEENA AKHTER. Though, Jabeena grew up in an environment which restrains girls from dreaming big but the fierce player knew no boundaries. She is a bronze medallist in the Wushu International Championship, held in Armenia last year (2017) making her the first Kashmiri woman champion in this form of martial art. Jabeena’s preferred martial art form is popularly known as Chinese Kungfu and is a full contact sport.



Inspiration for a career in Wushu

Jabeena Akhter, Jammu and Kashmir's first female wushu champion, wushu in jammu and kashmir, jammu and kashmir, wushu champion, women in wushu, women empowerment in jammu and kashmir


Jabeena began her career with playing cricket but chose Wushu as her profession. Why?

She says that she plays cricket because she loves it, and on the other hand, after taking inspiration from wrestler Geeta Phogat, she found a driving passion towards Wushu. For Jabeena, Wushu is a game of power, strength and flexibility, and most precisely, a way to make one (especially girls) safe.

She started playing in 2007 and made her way through the state, national and then to the international level competitions.

Jabeena Akhter, Jammu and Kashmir's first female wushu champion, wushu in jammu and kashmir, jammu and kashmir, wushu champion, women in wushu, women empowerment in jammu and kashmir


Jabeena as a coach

Jabeena Akhter, Jammu and Kashmir's first female wushu champion, wushu in jammu and kashmir, jammu and kashmir, wushu champion, women in wushu, women empowerment in jammu and kashmir


Akhter hails from a small village Qazipora at Tangmarg district of Baramulla and is the General Secretary of Wushu Association in Baramulla district. She’d set up this academy with the idea to make girls strong and give them a safer environment. Jabeena loves serving as a coach to a game she is highly passionate about. Her initiative has introduced the benefits of the game to girls. It has improved the number of girl participants in Wushu which was comparatively low earlier. At her Wushu Academy, girls train in a strengthening environment which was a big challenge at other sports academies of Jammu and Kashmir.

Jabeena Akhter, Jammu and Kashmir's first female wushu champion, wushu in jammu and kashmir, jammu and kashmir, wushu champion, women in wushu, women empowerment in jammu and kashmir


However, the biggest challenge as a coach is to overcome social barriers and financial crunches. She confesses to have not been able to participate in Hong Kong in 2017 due to financial issues. But it did not break her. She says that her priority is not only to succeed but also so to depart as much knowledge about the game as she can.

Jabeena Akhter, Jammu and Kashmir's first female wushu champion, wushu in jammu and kashmir, jammu and kashmir, wushu champion, women in wushu, women empowerment in jammu and kashmir


Jabeena is currently working hard for the International Wushu Championship next year, slated to be held in China later in November. We at New Age Kashmir wish her all the luck and hope that the state will look into the financial matters of her academy which will ultimately help her perform well in her personal performances. We are proud of her valour to face the odds and inspire more girls to take up wushu as a career. Jabeena Akhter is the personification of empowerment for the girls of Jammu and Kashmir and a big reason of pride for the country. Kudos to her!

Shivani Charak: The Journey to Success

Jammu and Kashmir along with its beauty is a place of hardships as well. It is beyond arguable that life is a little hard in here as compared to the rest of our country. Children are thus naturally headstrong and strong-willed here because they know that Hard Work is the Key to Success. Every day we are amazed by the achievements of our youth, their valor and strength to fight the odds and win the hearts of millions. We have had inspirations like Nadiya Nighat (J & K’s first female football coach), Iqra Rasool (the brave woman cricketer), Irtiqa Ayoub (the senior Rugby Player), Tajamul Islam (the kickboxing champ), and many more that it is truly hard to keep count of.

One such youngster among our rising champions is Shivani Charak, the golden sport climber of Jammu and Kashmir.


17 year old Shivani belongs to the humble town of Dharmal in Jammu. She is currently a student of Senior high school (Class 12th). In the initial stages of her career as a climber, Shivani battled with cancer, however it did not stop her from continuing to pursue her dream of becoming a renowned climber. She pays due credit to her coach at Shining Star Academy for his continuous support in shaping her to reach where she is today.


 Shivani Charak, climbers of Jammu and Kashmir, climber. boulderiong, shivani cliumber, jammu and kashmir


Journey of a climber within Shivani

Sport Climbing is a form of rock climbing that relies on permanent anchors fixed to the rock for protection. It has seen a transition from requiring physical strength to needing more of logical thinking. When climbing a wall or a rock, one has to be tactical and efficient. In this light, Shivani has gained her confidence through hard training and continuous practice. Having full support from her family, she practiced with other climbing aspirants and her coach in a school, the only one in Jammu and Kashmir that has a 40 feet tall wall to practice climbing. And with time, she achieved one goal at a time, climbing the stairs to success one by one.


Shivani Charak, climbers of Jammu and Kashmir, climber. boulderiong, shivani cliumber, jammu and kashmir


Achievements so far

  1. In the year 2015 she became the National Champion in Speed climbing besides winning a bronze medal in Bouldering.
  2. In 2016 & 2017, Shivani won 7 Gold & 4 Silver medals in North Zone and National competitions. (She was sent to Switzerland, Italy and Slovenia for training after her achievements in the above years.)
  3. In the beginning of 2018, Shivani was chosen by Indian Mountaineering Foundation (IMF), New Delhi, to represent India in 18th Asian Games to be held at Jakarta-Palembang in Indonesia in September, where she achieved the 11th spot.
  4. She was then selected by IMF for representing the country in the forthcoming Asian Youth Championship to be held at Chongqing in China from 1st to 4th November, 2018 where she secured 9th rank.

Shivani Charak, climbers of Jammu and Kashmir, climber. boulderiong, shivani cliumber, jammu and kashmir, imf, mountaneering

It is eminent to mention that Shivani has been improving her game with every competition. She accepts her results like a challenge and work harder the next time. Her progress can be termed as a pre Olympic preparation. And good performance in these competition will facilitate Shivani’s selection for the Olympic Games to be held in Japan in April, 2020.


Shivani Charak, climbers of Jammu and Kashmir, climber. boulderiong, shivani cliumber, jammu and kashmir, imf, mountaneering


“In an interview with JK Media, Jammu & Kashmir, Shivani mentions that it would be much relevant for aspiring and struggling climbers of the state if a wall was to be built by the authorities. She says that it becomes hard for her and others to travel to Delhi for practice as continuous travelling hinders with their studies. If Jammu & Kashmir is to have a  professional climbing wall of its own, it would be better for them and the upcoming generation of sport climbers.”


Shivani Charak has internationally made a mark on the sport of Climbing & Bouldering. Facing various challenges in all her competitions has improved her game and increased her confidence. At New Age Kashmir, we salute her strength and hard work and hope she inspires more girls to participate in climbing, a sport generally stereotyped to be a male’s domain. We wish her lots of luck and power to continue breaking stereotypes, working hard to achieve big and make India prouder by achieving a place in Olympics 20’.

Fame & Game: Cricket in Kashmir

One game that most of us have played during our childhood has to be Gully-Cricket or Bat-Ball, (how we used to define it). Do you remember the times when in the arms of nature, sun-kissed trees and snow peaked mountains, everything that was flat and long became a bat and everything round became a ball? Well, you feel me my friend. We all have to agree that Cricket is a game which is not just played but celebrated in our country. Although most of us enjoy watching and playing the game, this is hard fact that a very few have made to fame in this field.  Let’s not leave behind the names who have marked their presence in the fame and have made Jammu and Kashmir proud.


Cricket in Jammu and Kashmir


cricket in jammu and kashmir, cricket in kashmir, parvez rasool, manzoor dra, umar nazir, jammu and kashmir


The Cricket team of the state participated first in 1959-60 in Ranji Trophy and it was in 1970 that Jammu and Kashmir Cricket Association (JKCA) was formed. Since then, our players like Parvez Rasool, who is the present captain of Jammu and Kashmir Cricket team and an all-rounder cricketer Indian Cricket Team since 2014; Mithun Manhas, who has consistently been an all-rounder cricketer of the state, played in IPL and is now the assistant coach of Indian Premier League side Kings XI Punjab; Abid Nazi, who is considered as one of the fastest bowlers in India; etc., have inspired our youth to participate more openly and wilfully in the game.


Contribution of our Coaches


sunil joshi, cricket in jammu and kashmir, cricket in kashmir, parvez rasool, manzoor dra, umar nazir, jammu and kashmir


In the success stories of these players, our coaches and mentors of Jammu and Kashmir Cricket team remain a constant source of fuelling the spirit of our cricketers. Young or old, every player buds under a right coach and his visionary guidance. Sunil Joshi, an Indian cricketer and coach, who has been coaching Jammu and Kashmir cricket team since 2014, is a game changer for cricket in Kashmir. The team has tasted many victories under his guidance, the earliest of them was beating the Ranji giants- “Mumbai cricket team”, in the prelim rounds of Ranji Trophy in 2014/15.


Kudos to Irfan Pathan

cricket in jammu and kashmir, cricket in kashmir, parvez rasool, manzoor dra, umar nazir, jammu and kashmir


Recently, Irfan Pathan was appointed as the mentor cum coach of the Jammu and Kashmir Cricket team. The all-rounder cricketer of Indian National team has since then inspired and helped our players sense an overall development in the game. While devoting his time to the Senior Cricket Team, he did not forget to involve with the young cricketers of the state. In June and July, he went on a selection spree of young cricketers in Kashmir and Jammu respectively. With his constant mentoring and regular support of Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) to the Jammu and Kashmir Cricket Association our fresh players have begun to make histories at higher level.


New Buds in The Field

Manzoor Dar is the only selected player from Jammu and Kashmir who played in this year’s Indian Premier League (IPL) . He has been selected by Kings XI Punjab for his hard-hitting batsmanship.


cricket in jammu and kashmir, cricket in kashmir, parvez rasool, manzoor dra, umar nazir, jammu and kashmir


Umar Nazir, one of the fastest bowlers of Jammu and Kashmir, has been included in the India-C squad for Deodhar Trophy tournament.


cricket in jammu and kashmir, cricket in kashmir, parvez rasool, manzoor dra, umar nazir, jammu and kashmir


The success stories of Dar & Nazir are apt examples of how right guidance, hard- work, passion and the spirit of sport can change lives. The influential people of Jammu and Kashmir did not forget to congratulate our new achievers for their success:




The continuous efforts of the JKCA to instil the spirit of sports in the youth has turned out to be a blessing for our new generation, especially our budding cricket aspirants. All of us are thankful to the contributions of BCCI and Mentor Irfan Khan’s efforts. The evident growth of our players gives us a vision of higher pedestal in cricket for all our aspiring cricketers in future.

Humaira Gowher: The Kashmiri Scientist

“The important thing is not to stop questioning. Curiosity has its own reason for existence”, said the genius, Albert Einstein.Remember when our teachers asked us what we wanted to be when we grew up? I bet you do! I wanted to become a horse, yeah! Obviously, I didn’t know then that humans can’t grow up to become horses. But, there was this girl who always said that she’d grow up to be a scientist. She said she wanted to know, “how we walked and yet could fall but could not fly?”

Such is childhood! As I grew, I learned that curiosity is something that would shape what we will become. Once we open ourselves to our maximum capability to question, we become our best versions. The initial spark of curiosity metamorphosed a Kashmiri girl, Humaira Gowher, into an expert scientist in molecular biology research at Indiana, USA. The curious child of Kashmir, “who never cease to question”.

Meet ‘Humaira’ the Curious


Humaira Gowher, The Kashmiri scientist, scientists in kashmir, scientist from kashmir, Purdue university, biochemistry, medicine for cancer


Born and brought up in the city of bridges, Srinagar, Humaira is one of those lucky students to have attended Caset Experimental School, then headed by the exceptional educationist Prof C. L. Vishen. She treasured the feeling of becoming a scientist in the classes of Prof Vishen while he discussed the topics of inventions and discoveries. The idea of discovery and innovation, made a home in little Humaira’s heart.

How did a dream turn into reality?


Humaira Gowher, The Kashmiri scientist, scientists in kashmir, scientist from kashmir, Purdue university, biochemistry, medicine for cancer


Despite various challenges related to the complexity of the field, it was her determination to achieve her goals and the continuous support of her professors that turned her dream into reality. She took several steps in the process of achieving this height, starting from her school in Kashmir to graduation & post-graduation at Aligarh Muslim University. Under the supervision of Dr. S. E. Hasnain’s (Professor of Biological Sciences at IIT -Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi), Humaira developed a confidence that made her goals clearer and she got into the esteemed IISc (Indian Institute of Sciences). After two years, she shifted to Germany with her husband and continued her Ph. D only to complete it with in two and a half years and was awarded “Summa Cum laude” (Award of Excellence) for publishing 7 first author peer-reviewed manuscripts during this time. Finally, she shifted to Indiana USA, where she is now a fine professor and researcher at the Department of Biochemistry, Purdue University researching in Cancer Research, Genetics and Molecular Biology.

Secret of Science: Message to the aspirants


Humaira Gowher, The Kashmiri scientist, scientists in kashmir, scientist from kashmir, Purdue university, biochemistry, medicine for cancer


Humaira says, “Motivation to do science comes only from the passion to do it’. Like every other person, her life was also full of ups and downs. Science is like a roller coaster ride of various failures and success, it is the excitement of doing an experiment that kept Humaira free from the horrors of failure. While on the row for her Ph. D she had her first child Hana, whom she says was never a battle she had to fight, marriage, motherhood and science, all blended well in her everyday life. Now, she has an operational laboratory of her own with 22 reputed international journals already under her belt; Gowher’s research has already paved a way for anti-cancer medicines. Research for her is fun, she says, “why shouldn’t you be thankful for having a job—where you are being paid, for having fun.”

Shades of Humaira

There is one more shade to her personality, which came to light after a long time, only when she had time to give it a push. It was in 2017, that Humaira published her book, “How Do I Sing Nursery Rhymes in the Kashmiri Language?” As a 38 year old, she couldn’t simply forget her 19 year old self- the age she left her home, Kashmir, at!

Wherever we go, we cannot leave behind what our culture made out of us, our favourite food, language, hospitality, clothing, jokes, music, poems, etc, already shapes our personality. Humaira had her teenage self-compiled in her memories and after few years she struggled to transfer all that was Kashmir into her kids, Hana and Ahmed. The Kashmiri diaspora in the United States planned an annual meeting to celebrate Kashmiri language, art and culture where her other friends complained that due to the introduction of English language at an early age, it was difficult to raise their children bilingual in both Kashmiri and English.

Humaira took the responsibility upon her and thanks to her poetic genes that orient from her mother that she translated six common English rhymes into Koshur (Kashmiri Language) keeping in mind the similar tune of Kashmiri poems. She saw the results within hours of composition as her own children were able to recite the poems due to similar rhythm and tune that they memorized as babies.

A wonderful inspiration that is Humaira

Humaira Gowher’s dedication towards her work and revitalizing attachment to Kashmir is undoubtedly inspiring. She stands as the finest example of a self-made woman for our upcoming generation and her works are an ideal means of exploring the field of Biochemistry for our budding scientists. People around the world get to see her intellect and personality as a Kashmiri scientist, it makes for one proud moment for the state as well as the nation. I wish her lots of luck in her ongoing research and hope that she achieves success in every experiment of her life as well as career.

First Ever Martial Art Games of Jammu and Kashmir, 2018

First Ever Martial Art Games of Jammu and Kashmir, 2018

Jammu and Kashmir, a land known for its scenic beauty, rich culture and massive resources, is now also a sports hub. Recently, the Sports Council of Jammu and Kashmir organised the first ever Kashmir division Martial Art Games 2018. The competition held at the magnificent Indoor Stadium in Srinagar. It included a variety of Martial art forms like Judo, Taekwondo, Pencak Silat, Wushu, etc. and was. The competition that began with loud enthusiasm on 13th September 2018, concluded with high spirits on 15th September 2018. This massive competition witnessed participation of more than 5000 children from the valley

“It was a mega event”, said Nuzhat Ara, Divisional Sports Officer, Kashmir.

It was the number of participants that made the event a success and put a smile on the faces of all the sports officers of the state. As the sports council of the state makes sure to keep its youth involved in one or the other competition, the hard work and efforts had been paid off by the spirit and passion of young sportsmen.

This platform has helped the children of the valley to witness a variety of games together and give them a broader perspective of the Martial Art forms, providing them a station to participate and exercise their talents.

Let’s see how our little champions have benefitted from this wonderful initiative of J & K Sports Council:



The video is only a slight reflection of the energy and sports spirit of the young participants and their inspiring coaches. I must admit, the actual ecstasy of the event was of a different level.


Here are some beautiful glimpses from the cheerful Martial Arts Games at Indoor Stadium Srinagar:

First Ever Martial Art Games, Jammu and Kashmir, wushu, judo, taekwondo

First Ever Martial Art Games, Jammu and Kashmir, wushu, judo, taekwondo First Ever Martial Art Games, Jammu and Kashmir, wushu, judo, taekwondo First Ever Martial Art Games, Jammu and Kashmir, wushu, judo, taekwondo First Ever Martial Art Games, Jammu and Kashmir, wushu, judo, taekwondo


At New Age Kashmir we wish all the participants a good luck for their future and wish for their steady growth in their desired game. We hope that the children address the opportunities that are extended to them by the sports council and realise their worth. The state knows and believes that their children have a lot of potentials and are capable to participate at both National and International levels. Thus, they put in all the effort to wing their raw talents and help them take the highest of flights.

“Aryans Shikara App”: An innovation of Jammu and Kashmir’s children

“The youth is the future, the future is the youth. The youth and the future will always be linked because none can exist in the absence of another”, said Pali Lehohla in one of his articles. And to go by his word, the enigmatic and energetic youth of today is indeed an epitome of future. And thus with small steps, basic changes in contemporariness and individual initiative, a country can count upon a bright future for its people.

Recently, the initiative of eight youthful students has brought a new wave to uplift digital India, by making an application for online Shikhara ride bookings. These students, who belong to Kashmir, are engineering students in Aryans Engineering College, Chandigarh. The application helps people across the country to pre-book a Shikara ride in Dal Lake, Srinagar and have decided to name their app “Aryans Shikara App”. There is, if, any ride that can beat the Gondola ride in Venice is the Shikara ride in the serene Dal lake. And now, these brilliant budding engineers have made it far more easier to take one.

How’s and About’s of “Aryans Shikara App”

The application was positively accepted and launched on 4th September 2018 in Srinagar during the launch function at Hotel Lala Rukh by Prof Anil Sahasrabudhe, chairman of the All-India Council for Technical Education, who was not only proud of his talented and bright children but also mesmerized by their efforts.

The Aryans Shikara App consists of a detailed information of Shikara owners from gate number 1 to 20. While a person can choose the gate number and the Shikara owner in advance, a Shikara owner is also authorized to accept or reject a booking as per his availability. During the launch function, Prof Sahasrabudhe mentioned and explained all the features of the app and simultaneously applauded the innovative thought and motivation of the students that drove them to this invention. “We worked hard in collecting the details of shikaras owners, generating a database and bringing the same on a single platform”, said Riyaz Rasool (one of the student developers)


Aryans Shikara App, Jammu and Kashmir, Aryans Engineering College, Youth of Kashmir, The innovations in Kashmir, Aryans, Chandigarh


The motivation behind the Thought

From a conversation in the conference with the eight student developers of the app, Riyaz Rasool, Irfan Ahmad Malik, Abid Mushtaq, Shakir Ahmad, Asif Ahmad, Mehbooba Bano, Mehzabeen and Sabreena, who belong to Aryans College of Engineering, we got to know that the motivation to create an app for booking Shikaras began with a thought. A thought that crossed the mind of Shakir Ahmad while booking a cab (Ola or Uber Cabs). The students added that the college and teachers have been of continuous motivation in implementing their idea into a product. They specifically thanked Dr. Anshu Kataria, their professor, for his support in availing the needful material for creating the app.


Aryans Shikara App, Jammu and Kashmir, Aryans Engineering College, Youth of Kashmir, The innovations in Kashmir, Aryans, Chandigarh


Jammu and Kashmir have always been proud of its youth, especially from Aryans Engineering College, where approximately 1800 students from different parts of the Valley study. The college has been supporting the talented students to come up with ideas and generate new & innovative products. Before Aryans Shikara App, the students of the same institution have come up with first ever Solar Boat booking app at Dal Lake, “Aryans Solar Boat” and many other apps like “Aryans Android App”, “Aryans Life Saving Glove”, “Aryans Safety Helmet”, etc.


With New Age Kashmir, we celebrate and applaud the achievements of our future-oriented youth and thanks Aryans Engineering College for its motivating support. We wish all the very best for the students and pray for all their dreams to come true. We hope that the new generation will look forward to such endeavors by their seniors, walk in the direction of a brighter future, and a digitally progressive Kashmir.


Note: You can download the Aryans Shikara App (1.4 version of 6.61 MB) from Google Play Store (

Bhanu Pratap Singh: The man of honour of Jammu and Kashmir

Bhanu Pratap Singh: The man of honour of Jammu and Kashmir

With ongoing Asian Games in Jakarta Palembang, India has registered its victory by bringing home several Bronze, Silver and Gold medals. To keep a count on the medals won has become difficult with each passing day. The glory is widening its wings every day.

The most recent victories came bearing gifts as Sania Nehwal, PV Sindu and Hima Das broke National Records in Women’s Single Badminton and Women’s 400m Final respectively. It is in almost all the sports that our champions have roared victories.

Moreover, on 22nd August 2018, India’s four bronze medals hauled in Wushu, one of which became honour of international medal winner, Bhanu Pratap Singh, of Jammu and Kashmir. His victory came as a huge appreciation for the country because, “It is uniquely important in Wushu to excel in Asian Games even if you have won a World Championships medal”, says The Indian Express; and thus India is most proud to celebrate it.

Bhanu Pratap Singh is a 22 year old Wushu Player, son of a Bharat Kesari wrestler, Balkar Singh, (Former) from village Roopnagar in Jammu. It was due to his mischievous childhood and innocent fight- picking that Bhanu’s parents picked him up for Wushu. And, in return he has gifted, not only his parents, but also the nation, a great win in the Asian Games. Besides his achievements as a sports person, Bhanu serves his nation as a cop with the Jammu and Kashmir Police. He is proof that there is no limit to talent and that it ultimately makes your people and your country proud!


Here are some mesmerizing moments of Bhanu Pratap Singh from the day of winning.



Also, the officials of J&K Police department and Indian Army were not behind in sharing their affection for Bhanu. He has got multiple blessings from some very important people as they were proud enough of his achievements and thought it necessary to address it personally to the world.

  1. Imtiyaz Hussain

  1. Shesh Paul Vaid

sp vaid

  1. K. Vijay Kumar

Vijay Kumar

  1. Rajyavardhan Rathore


  1. Waheed Para

para 1

The former chairperson of J&K sports council went as far as to honour Bhanu Pratap Singh by adding his image as his profile picture on twitter.

waheed para, bhanu pratap singh, Waheed para profile picture


With Bhanu’s victory in Wushu, it has become difficult for us to await the upcoming Wushu Festival to be held next year in Srinagar. This festival would welcome and celebrate the achievements of four bronze medal holders in Wushu. It sure is going to be big!

It is needless to say how proud we are of our shining star Bhanu Pratap Singh. On the behalf of New Age Kashmir, I congratulate him for his wonderful victory. Lots of blessings and love for you. Keep up the spirit of Wushu!

From “Heaven On Earth” To “God’s Own Country”

From “Heaven On Earth” To “God’s Own Country”

With Eid ul-Adha being celebrated worldwide, let’s understand the real meaning of sacrifice. There are five pillars of Islam that are mandatory for Muslims: Salat (Prayer), Zakat (Charity), Shahada (Creed), Sawm (Fasting), and, only if the individual can afford it, Hajj (Pilgrimage).
Islam strongly advocates charity especially during the month of Ramzan and Eid. The Holy Quran and Sunnah put great emphasis on charity by mentioning the virtues and benefits of Zakat multiple times.

Allah says in the Quran : “It is not their meat nor their blood that reaches Allah; it is your devotion that reaches him.”
(Quran 22:37)

This Eid ul Adha let the essential Zakat, Qurbani and associated celebratory expenditures be contributed to the Kerala Flood Relief.

Ibn Abbas narrated that the Holy Prophet (PBUH) said, “He is not a believer whose stomach is filled while the neighbour to his side goes hungry.” ~ Al-Sunan al-Kubra 19049


Kerala floods


The havoc that destroyed Kerala

The beautiful southern coastal state of India Kerala, has witnessed a disastrous flood that has killed more than 350 people and has wrecked havoc. With the news portals and social media circles abuzz with the damage beyond imagination affair of the state, the heroic rescue operations by Indian Army, Indian Air Force (IAF), Indian Navy, the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF), local police and the many calls of solidarity, the entire country has come forwards in this hour of need.
With ‘God’s own country’, Kerala battling its worst flood in nearly a century, the ‘Heaven on Earth’, Kashmir is also praying and expressing solidarity with the people of Kerala. In the year 2014, the state of Jammu and Kashmir had witnessed similar devastation caused by disastrous flood of such intensity and magnitude as the monsoon wrath in the southern coastal state.
Four years later we have yet again been reminded of our own tragedies. Many people also reminded fellow Kashmiris that during the 2014 floods, a lot of Keralites helped us cope with that mammoth disaster by bringing in relief, aid material and now, it was our turn to support them in this hour of need.

While the whole Nation is waiting for this terrible incident to pass and hoping and praying for a quick recovery by the state, we, the state of Jammu and Kashmir have also joined hands with the rest of the country to help those affected by the disaster.

Horrific disasters like this bring people closer and test the courage of the country to stand tall and united whenever the need arises. Apart from the government and various organizations, individuals across the country have also come forward to help those affected by the disaster.

With our former Chief Minister Omar Abdullah taking to twitter to take attention of the state towards Kerala that battles its worst floods in 90 years.

The other politician who has taken a pro-active stand on the Kerala floods was Dr Haseeb Drabu, ex finance minister under Mehbooba Mufti government.

IAS topper Shah Faesal who is currently studying abroad put on his wall

As a lot of people are still battling with the devastating floods, many people from the valley are extending their help to offer support.


Kashmir Civil Society


A group of young civil society members in Kashmir is collecting food packets to send help as many as 2000 families in Kerala. Most of them say that they can understand the pain as the valley has gone through the same deluge in 2014.

Needless to say, Kerala’s flood situations made the Nation forget their differences and extend support in whichever ways possible.

Notably, a J&K Bank’s staff members have decided to contribute Rs 11 crore to the flood-affected victims of Kerala. Chairman Parvez Ahmed shall be contributing his two months’ salary while the other staffs have decided to help the flood-affected victims of Kerala by donating their six days salary during this time of severe crisis.

J&K Bank

The executive presidents has also contributed one month salary and other members of the top management of the bank also reciprocated by making generous contribution to the fund collected by the bank for the relief measures in Kerala.

A huge Thank you from NewAge Kashmir to each and everyone who have reached out to help the state through the distress. Your contribution meant a lot to many.

If you are also looking for ways in which you can help, here’s the link:


Eid Mubarak

Eid Mubarak to each and every one of you! May this Eid bring Peace, Compassion and Happiness.

Haji Public School - ‘Terras Irradient’

Haji Public School – ‘Terras Irradient’

Let Them Illuminate the Earth.

Breswana village, an average, remote, inaccessible village in the mountains of Doda in Jammu and Kashmir, was an area where the concept of education was almost unknown for over 30 years. Yes you might have come across the name of the village quite a number of times, why not? Breswana village of Doda – a district 160 km northeast of Jammu was once a hub of militancy. Here almost every household was hit by militancy till 2004.


Rekindling hopes at Haji Public School

Walk with us today to an altitude above 7,100 feet, about 200-odd kms from Jammu through a rocky, harsh terrain with steep slopes, not to mention the adverse weather for most time of the year to a Road to Change.

In 2008, Sabbah Haji sat at her desk based out of Bangalore, and watched in harrowing news reels her small town in the Doda district as the Amarnath struggle of Jammu & Kashmir unfold. It was when Sabbah decided to move to Breswana and join her parents to change people’s lives there and grab positive news headlines for her ancestral home. And what better way to change people’s lives than to educate them?

“And just like that, out of nowhere, we started talking about it,” says Sabaah Haji, Director of Haji Public School, speaking to India Today.

Rekindling hopes for education in the Doda district which went without any education to feed the knowledge-hungry for 3 decades. Education will help break the vicious cycles of violence, terrorism that citizens find impossible to come out of.

Here’s how pieces of the jigsaw puzzle fit

The village overlooking the Chenab River needed to see a drastic change that would uplift it. Nasir Haji, Sabbah Haji’s uncle who is a Singapore-based Indian businessman almost impulsively decided on starting the Haji Public School to change people’s lives there by educating them. The government schools did not function and there were almost no private schools there.

“Uncle Nasir suggested we start a school there,” says Sabbah.


Sabbah Haji with students


The mountain-cut village school was established and is managed by Nasir’s brother Saleem Haji and his daughter Sabbah Haji. Her mother Tasneem Haji, an educationist, too is part of the school set up. For a School that has just one objective – to impart knowledge to those children who cannot avail of the academic facilities, a strong foundation for classrooms was needed.  What better way than all the village inhabitants coming together and laying the foundation of the school brick by brick?

The Haji Public School started on 4th May 2009, at the ground level, teaching only the lower and upper kindergarten students.

A master plan to get children back

From parents lined up around windows to poke their heads into classrooms as a curiosity to parents not willing to give up on a good education for their children so that they get an opportunity to make it on their own when they grow up, Haji Public School is making a redeeming difference. When it started, the school had student strength of 30 with two grades. As of today, the student strength has risen to 400 plus studying in classes up to eighth grades from 15 villages, who walk hours across mountains every day to attend school. Last year, Haji Public School’s first batch, who had joined in KG in 2009, cleared their Class 8 Board exams with flying colors. This year the second kindergarten batch is through.

2017 batch


“We have had families move from cities to the village for the school, because we provide good quality education. All of this is because we have kept it simple. Minimal fee structure, very competent teachers, good infrastructure and teaching aids and fun learning,” says Sabaah to India Today.

Talking about the positive change the school has brought about in his children, Abdul Latief Ahanger (father of two children studying in grade six and grade seven of HPS) says: “I always see them obsessed with books. Also, they were very shy in initial days but now, their level of confidence has increased manifold.”

It takes a big heart to shape a little mind! – That’s for our Volunteer teachers redefining education


Volunteer at HPS


Who would mind to spend some quality time with our good old Himalayan Mountains, you wonder! Well, many would especially because the district 160 km northeast of Jammu on the lap of our old friend was once a hub of militancy.

“I feel people are too scared to come here and there is a necessity to teach the students here more than any other normal city in India,” says Karishma, a volunteer teacher.

While there’s no doubt your experience in Breswana will be worthwhile, Sabaah warns that the volunteer programme is not a “chill volun-tourism gig” and we can’t agree more. After all, a good teacher makes a good student and that is exactly what HPS is trying to make, bright kids for a brighter tomorrow.

As a volunteer teacher at Haji Public School, you’ll be offered free boarding and lodging in return for your time at the school. Teaching roles at such remote, almost inaccessible places come with extra responsibilities and dedication. To be a volunteer at Haji Public School, you need to be very serious, hard-working, patient and a sincere worker as the hopes of many parents lie on their shoulders so that after completing their education they can work for betterment of their village and make it a better heaven.

Karishma Prakash, 25, quit her engineering job in Bengaluru and Sanu Khan, 30, took a sabbatical from Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) in Thiruvananthapuram. Both volunteer as teachers at the Haji Public School in Breswana village of Doda.

“Coming here has been an eye-opening experience. The children despite the different kind of hardship they face are tremendously bright,” says Dhamini Ratnam, 33, who quit her journalism job in Mumbai to teach class 7 students here.

Thanks to the efforts of these volunteers and many more who are trying to make it better with every single passing day whose constant efforts to make something out of these children is already bearing fruits.

Besides the many deodar and pine trees around the enthusiastic children are waiting for you. Go and share as much knowledge as you have acquired and let the nature be your teacher instead, that’s the best part of imparting knowledge!

You can check out the complete details of their Volunteer Programme here. Click here to see how you can help Haji Public School.


Leap of Happiness

Luckily, google up Breswana on the net now and you’ll find a lot of links that talk only about Haji Public School and Sabbah Haji. This amazing journey of changing the narrative of a strife-ridden place to a success story is all due to Sabbah and her amazing team that works day in and out for the betterment of the place.
New Age Kashmir salutes their will-power and will be back soon with more such stories that’ll help you find positive stories in a world full of negative headlines.

Sabbah Haji can be followed on Twitter: @imsabbah

The school website:


The Other Kashmir – Developments in Kashmir over the Years

We have been living with the typical image of the stunning beauty of Kashmir. There are a number of books written about the colors of the Kashmir valley depicting its beauty, its cultures and traditions.
This Heaven on Earth is not just beautiful but also a source of pride for us Kashmiris. Let’s get over the beauty of Kashmir for some time and move over to some rapid developments that Kashmir has seen in the past few years.

Yes, it is raining developments in Jammu and Kashmir.

Prosperity, health, education, connectivity and jobs are all the parameters to measure development. Being a citizen of the paradise here is a little glimpse of the developing Jammu and Kashmir that’ll help people understand the realities much better.

Human Development Index:

Jammu Kashmir is ranked 7th among major 17 states with a score of 0.64 classified as medium HDI economy, which is of course better than other Indian states.



North India's first Cable stayed bridge

North India’s first cablestayed bridge – the fourth of its kind in the country.
Named Atal Setu, the bridge was inaugurated y Border Roads Organization (BRO) on Dunera-Basohli-Bhadharwah road in Basohali town in Kathua district of Jammu and Kashmir.


Chenab bridge

The Chenab Bridge – World’s highest railway bridge being built in Jammu and Kashmir.
Another reason to cheer is this arch type bridge being built over the Chenab River in Jammu and Kashmir’s Reasi district. The arch will stand higher than the Eiffel Tower.


patnitop tunnel

Chenani-Nashri tunnel (or Patnitop Tunnel) – country’s longest road tunnel.
An engineering marvel, Jammu-Kashmir’s new lifeline the longest tunnel will reduce the journey time by two hours and provide a safe, all-weather route to commuters travelling from Jammu and Udhampur to Ramban, Banihal and Srinagar.


Zojila Tunnel

The Zojila underground tunnel, which is to connect Ladakh to the rest of the country all year round.

Development of aviation sector in Jammu and Kashmir.
The Jammu Airport is set to offer a world-class experience to passengers with an expanded and modernised terminal.


Leh Airport

Leh Airport
Truly Heaven on Earth – An early morning landing at the Leh airport in Ladakh.



Srinagar Airport
Rated as the 2nd best airport in the world, in the category of handling up to 2 million passengers per year by the Airports Council International.


Train to Kashmir
The Baramulla-Banihal train racing down the snowy valley surrounded by mountains in the distance has become a talking point on social media, with even Railway Minister Piyush Goyal taking note of it. And, why not?

Kashmir Train Ploughing Through Snow Is A Feast For The Eyes

Railway line linking Kashmir with rest of India may become functional by 2021

New expressway from New Delhi to Katra

A project would come up which would reduce the distance between Delhi and Katra by 110 km.


Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Narayana Superspeciality Hospital

To bridge the health divide in Jammu and Kashmir there is an availability of Super specialty hospitals like SMGS, GMC in Jammu and SKIMS in Srinagar along with various other government health facilities.

In a recent development the centre has agreed to setting up two AIIMS in Jammu and Kashmir.


Education occupies a pivotal position in the socio-economic development. There are many Universities, Colleges like NIT and Medical colleges. Major ones are listed below.

List of universities

There are a lot of institutions of higher education that are preparing students for a promising career.

Infrastructure in Jammu & Kashmir – Education

“Best investment of any nation is in woman education”

Similarly, education of women in Jammu and Kashmir plays an important role in the development of the state. Slowly but steadily the status of education of women is improving in the society.

Status of Female Education in Jammu and Kashmir Since 1950

The Centre is planning to set up an Indian Institute of Management (IIM) in Jammu and Kashmir.

IIT Jammu to start this year with 90 students.



The state is trying to give a boost to the sports infrastructure in the Valley to join the road of development.

JKOA demands reconstitution of Sports Council

In major push to sports, Jammu and Kashmir government announces a football club for every Valley village




Jammu and Kashmir uses the power of nature and relies heavily on tourism and believe me a take a tour to Jammu and Kashmir and escape into the lap of nature.

Tourism in J&K is one of the most important sectors of economy.

Tourism acts as a catalyst in the development of backward and far flung regions of a particular area. Not only that, it has become a multi -segmental industry in Jammu and Kashmir by providing different types of jobs like hotel managers, guides, tour operators, chefs etc which further strengthens the J&K economy by increasing income and standard of living of the people. It can also give a boost to the economic condition of the residents by promoting local art like Handicrafts, Handlooms, Cricket bat industry and Ayurveda.


More the violence less the development. Good news emerging from the valley as the number of youth joining militancy in Kashmir has come down in the recent years.


Astronomical Observatory in Ladakh

Not many will know but there is an Astronomical observatory in Ladakh.

It’s funny how the backward, underdeveloped and controlled Kashmir is the only thing that attracts the media’s eye. While on the other side these developments in Kashmir have demolished all the stereotypes and presented the image of the aspirational Kashmiri and not a stone-pelter Kashmiri.

IAS couple from J&K



From young Kashmiris entering the civil services to a five-year-old girl cleaning up the Dal Lake, we are also determined and dedicated to develop our Nation.