‘Regional harmony imperative for J&K’s development’
Kishtwar: Former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister and National Conference Working President Omar Abdullah on Saturday underlined the need for regional amity and harmony in the State.
He said both internal and external peace was a pre-requisite for J&K’s development. Omar Abdullah expressed these views while addressing a large public gathering in Kishtwar Saturday. The NC Working President also expressed disappointment at the complete failure of the PDP-BJP Government in delivering on its political and governance-related promises and said Mufti Mohammad Sayeed had squandered the people’s mandate by heading a directionless, self-contradictory Government.
“Unfortunately, if there has been any change at all in J&K, it has been a change for the worse. The comprehensive development process initiated by the previous Government in all the three regions of the State has been brought to a grinding halt by the present PDP-BJP Government led by Mufti Mohammad Sayeed. The seeds of divisive politics are being sown into the socio-political fabric of the State. Both PDP and BJP have a long-cherished dream of reaping the political dividends of such divisiveness and polarization in Jammu and Kashmir. Not only is this trend dangerous for the State but it also poses a great risk to peace in the entire region given that J&K’s internal political atmosphere has far-reaching external ramifications”, Abdullah said while addressing the public in Kishtwar.
Omar Abdullah said landmark developmental initiatives started during his tenure as Chief Minister have been put on the back burner and the conventional, destructive attitude of politicizing previously initiated developmental projects has been reinvented by the PDP-BJP Government which ironically promised to usher the State into a new era of growth. “The abandonment of the Kishtwar Power Project by the PDP-BJP Government led by Mufti Sahab has not only deprived the power-starved State of much needed addition in power-generation but also robbed Kishtwar of an opportunity of job creation and economic impetus. Back in 2003, Mufti Mohammad Sayeed did same thing with 1,200 MW Sawlakote Power Project which would have been in the commissioning stage as of now had Mufti Mohammad Sayeed looked at the cause of development beyond speeches, press statements and photo-opportunities”, the NC Working President added.
Omar Abdullah said the failure of the PDP-BJP combine to fulfill its promises had led to a political deficit in the State – one that could lead to a state of chaos, turmoil and uncertainty. “This Government has made so many U-turns that it would be well-advised to dedicate an entire Ministry to U-turns. Every single political and economic promise made by PDP and BJP ahead of the elections stands shattered and this is disappointing. The mandate for governance in a democracy and especially in a State as fragile as J&K is very precious. A disillusionment and disenchantment with the system is tragic and this present Government has squandered the hopes of people in every town and village in the State”, Omar Abdullah said while speaking in Kishtwar.
“Modi Ji had promised a drinking water pipeline to the people of Kisthwar during his public meeting here ahead of the elections and said the pipeline would be so huge that the entire Abdullah family can drive through that pipeline. I have driven to Kisthwar today and I had to take the road as eager as I was to drive through the water pipeline – as there is no sight of a single pipe, leave alone a pipeline”, Mr. Omar Abdullah said while ridiculing the tall, unkempt promises of both PDP and BJP with the people of Kisthwar.
Denouncing recent incidents of communal violence and attempts to polarize the people of the State on the lines of region and religion, Omar Abdullah said National Conference has always opposed the type of politics that is invested in the goal of dividing people for political dividends and the party would continue to confront these political forces with all its democratic and political might. “Attempts are being made to create an atmosphere of confrontation between regions and religions. Nothing could be more condemnable and unfortunate. The fruits of a hard-earned peace are being wasted by Mufti Mohammad Sayeed who has unfortunately chosen to surrender in a greater plot of divisive politics just to remain in power”, Omar Abdullah added.
The former Chief Minister reiterated that peace was imperative for progress and development of a state like Jammu and Kashmir which has undergone most turbulent phase of the history. He said National Conference will always strive for peace and tranquility and stand against those like a rock who want to disturb it for furthering their myopic political agenda.
Expressing his gratitude to the huge gathering for reposing their faith in National Conference, Abdullah said that his party might have been voted out of power but it continues to remain in the hearts of the people. He said the trust and confidence of the people will further rejuvenate National Conference’s mission of selfless service and enable it to fight back all those who want to trample the distinguished character of Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh. He said his party will remain in the forefront to fight for the genuine cause of the people.
During his 40-minute address, the former Chief Minister dewlt on development and the obtaining political situation of the State. He regretted over the callousness of the PDP-BJP coalition towards Rehbar-e-Taleem Teachers and other segments of employees who are not being paid their wages timely. He also expressed concern over scarcity of rations on CAPD outlets saying that the people in far-flung areas were suffering immensely.
Responding to the local issues, Abdullah lamented over stopping the water supply and irrigation projects in Kishtwar for which Rs 55 crores had been earmarked during by his government.
Those who spoke on the occasion included Provincial President Devender Singh Rana, former ministers Ajay Kumar Sadhotra and Sajjad Ahmed Kitchloo, State Vice President Rattan Lal Gupta, Youth National Conference Provincial President Ajaz Jan, former legislators Brij Mohan Sharman and Dr Chaman Lal besides Tanveer Kitchloo, District President and Shabir Ahmed. (KNS)