Let us turn a new leaf, start a new chapter in JK’s development, progress: Mufti Sayeed

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‘Govt will protect interests of all regions’

JAMMU: Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed today sought cooperation of all political parties in writing a new chapter in taking J&K towards lasting peace and development. He said the PDP-BJP alliance will work together and provide a strong Government that will protect the interests of people of all the three regions of the State.

The Chief Minister was speaking on the Motion of Thanks on the last day of the Budget Session of the Legislative Council.

Referring to the difficult phase the State has gone through, Mufti Sayeed said it is time to heal the wounds and wipe the tears of the people by giving them inclusive governance that takes on board all the political parties of the State. “The Opposition’s job is to oppose and expose. We seek everyoné’s cooperation in giving a Government of substance to the people,” he said and added the Agenda of the Alliance of the PDP-BJP Government will take along all the stakeholders who have a role to play in ushering in peace and development of the State.

On the extensive damage caused by flood fury of September last year, the Chief Minister said he has discussed the rehabilitation programme in detail with the Prime Minister Narendra Modi in New Delhi recently. “The floods have wreaked havoc all over the State including Jammu region. With active cooperation from the Centre, we will rehabilitate the victims and restore the infrastructure in all the affected areas of the State,” he added.

Highlighting the role of the Kashmiri Pandit community, the Chief Minister said their return to the Valley will restore the diversity for which J&K was known all over the country. He said there are presently 7,247 Kashmiri Pandits living in Kashmir, which include 638 in Anantnag, 157 in Ganderbal, 395 in Pulwama and 870 in Budgam. “Kashmiri Pandits want to live with their Muslim brethren shoulder-to-shoulder. If we have to keep our multi-religious society intact and end political uncertainty, Kashmiri Pandits have to return to the Valley with dignity and honour,” he said.

Mufti Sayeed urged the political parties not to see through the narrow prism of regional politics on the issue of establishment of two Central institutions, AIIMS in Kashmir and Indian Institute of Management (IIM) in Jammu, saying that it is the people of the State who stand to benefit once these institutions of excellence start functioning. “For advanced medical treatment, we are forced to travel to either Chandigarh or New Delhi. Once AIIMS is established, these medical facilities will be available to our citizens within the State,” he stated and added that coming up of IIM at Jammu will benefit our young and talented students who aspire for state-of-the-art institutions of higher learning.

The Chief Minister also spoke about the Government’s plan to repair the difficult stretch from Ramban to Banihal on the Jammu-Srinagar National Highway that regularly forces closure of road for days together. He said the alternate route of Mughal Road will be thrown open for traffic from last week of April.

Welcoming the new members to the Upper House of the Legislature, Mufti Sayeed termed it as a positive sign the presence of many youngsters in the “House of Elders”. He said the debates and discussions in the House maintain a system of checks and balances over the Government. “I am impressed by the quality of debates during the Budget Session and the ability of the new members to extract information from the Ministers, who have equally done a fine job,” he said and asked the Ministers to be remain accessible to the people at all times to solve their genuine problems.

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