Govt to extend benefits to victims of border firing: CM Mufti

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JAMMU: Asking Pakistan to put an end to unprovoked firing from across the International Border (IB), Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed today stated that the new Government will work towards extending all benefits accruing to the affected people living near the IB and the LoC.

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The Chief Minister said this during Question Hour when the issue of measures being taken by the Government to stop firing and payment of compensation to the victims living near the borders was being discussed.

Recalling his earlier tenure as the Chief Minister of J&K between 2002 to 2005, Mufti said the initiatives taken by the then Prime Minister of India Atal Bihari Vajpayee in engaging former Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf bore rich dividends in peace. “There was calm on the borders and no firing occurred from Kargil to Kathua between 2002 and 2008,” he said, while describing the problem of regular border firing as something peculiar to J&K.

Ensuring the people that the Government will take all steps needed to ensure peace on borders so that the people are able to live in a secure environment, the Chief Minister said the issue of bringing succor in the lives of people affected by intermittent firing from across the borders figures prominently in the Common Minimum Programme.

While intervening during another question about rising drug addiction amongst youth, the Chief Minister assured the House that the Government will take proper action to combat drug trafficking in the State. “J&K Police and the Health Department will launch a multi-pronged strategy to tackle the menace of drug addiction which is playing with future of our youth,” he said and added that the Government will ensure that drugs smuggled from across the border and from other states do not enter J&K. He said no medicines will be provided at any medical store without proper prescription of the doctors.