Government Officials in Kashmir are gearing up for the bi-annual shifting of the state capital from Srinagar to Jammu.
The bi-annual practice of 'Darbar' (Secretariat) move between the two capital cities of the state, Srinagar and Jammu, has been inherited from the Dogra rule, dating back to the 19th century.
It is estimated that the whole exercise of relocating offices costs the government over 520,000 dollars every year. The civil secretariat will open in Jammu on November 5.
"At the moment all the documents from the Srinagar secretariat are being loaded into trucks and other vehicles to be transported to Jammu. All this will be reopened in Jammu. This durbar move is an age old tradition and is done bi-annually. Six months the secretariat is in Srinagar and six months in Jammu," said a government employee, Sajjad Ahmad.
Srinagar is 300 kilometres north of Jammu. The state government is making easy and smooth transportation of all the government records packed in boxes and jute bags.
The practice of shifting of the 'Darbar' (royal court) was started in 1882 by the then Maharaja Pratap Singh to meet the aspirations of the people living in far-flung areas of the state.
There are divergent views on the six- monthly shifting of the capital. Some people argue that it is not possible for the people of Jammu and Ladakh regions to travel all the way to snowbound Srinagar in the winter season to attend to administrative work.