2014 assembly elections represent watershed in JK’s political history: Mufti

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Srinagar: Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Patron Mufti Mohammad Sayeed today said Jammu and Kashmir is poised for a positive turn as the movement for change is gaining ground in every nook and corner of the State.
“This election is not just about development and governance, it is about safeguarding the distinct identity of Jammu and Kashmir and upholding the dignity of its people,” Mufti said while addressing a series of election rallies at Chassana, Sangaldan, Qazigund, Uri and Kunzer.
Mufti said the momentum has already been set for the momentous change in the very first phase of polls as PDP has been able to inspire confidence among the people in all the regions of the state about its ability to solve the multiple problems faced by Jammu and Kashmir on political, economic. administrative and financial fronts. He said with a decisive mandate, PDP will carry forward its agenda of political resolution, good governance and employment generation and convert Jammu and Kashmir into a real welfare state.
Mufti said the political subversion and uncertainty that the state has faced in the last seven decades has already taken a heavy toll on its polity, economy and human resource and it can ill afford any further disruption. “Attempts being made currently by some quarters to squeeze the space for its residents will have to be met with maturity, wisdom, collective action and democratic assertion of our rights,” he said and added that the people of the State in general and the youth in particular are looking up towards PDP with great hope and expectations to put up a responsive political structure, productive economic setup and supportive social fabric in place. “It is with this objective in mind that PDP has come out with a manifesto which enumerates comprehensive agenda to safeguard the State’s special constitutional position and identity, lays out a futuristic economic and developmental agenda and gives a vision that is politically unifying and economically inclusive,” he said and added that the party would with fresh resolve strive towards accomplishing the unfinished agenda of resolution and development set off in 2002.
Mufti said with the Self Rule framework being the guiding principle for the resolution of the Kashmir issue, PDP would work towards facilitating closer ties across the Line of Control, making the borders irrelevant, reviving the State’s traditional connectivity with outside world to pave the way for economic and social integration of the region through a common economic market.
Mufti said given the distinct geographical features of different regions of the State, PDP would ensure area-specific development with focus on tourism, horticulture and handicrafts in Jhelum Valley region, generation of hydropower in Chenab Valley region, non-conventional energy in Indus Valley region, biotechnology in Pir Panchal region and manufacturing and trade in Jammu region. “The area-specific initiatives to be launched in these sectors would not only create massive job opportunities for the youth but would also generate wealth for the State and its people,” he said and added that there are no limits to the State’s economic potential and in addition to its rich water and mineral resources, the brand name Jammu and Kashmir has many dimensions – be it tourism, art, handicrafts, forests or agricultural and horticultural products, which if harnessed judiciously can end the State’s economic deprivation.
“To tap the massive economic potential of the state, the only thing to be done is to devise and start implementing focused politico-economic strategies, which only a responsive and responsible government can do,” Mufti said and added that one of the major challenges in J&K today is connectivity – the lack of it and need for it. “We have to connect to the larger world outside through physical connectivity, economic connectivity and knowledge connectivity to explore the full potential of our enterprising young population,” he said.
Senior leaders Nizamudin Bhat; Mohammad Sartaj Madni, candidate for Devsar assembly constituency; Haji Imtiyaz Shan, candidate for Gool assembly constituency; Shafiq-ur-Rehman, candidate for Mahore constituency; Mohammad Abbas Wani, candidate for Gulmarg constituency; Raja Aijaz Ali, candidate for Uri constituency; Dr Shabir Mangral; Zaffarullah Wani; Riyaz Ahmad Dar; Peer Mohammad Shafi; Mohammad Ayoub Rather; Abdul Aziz Dar; Prof. Abdul Jabbar, and others were also present on the occasion.