Governor for strict vigil on all frontiers
Jammu, Jan 26: The Governor, N. N. Vohra, has said that though there has been an improvement in the overall security situation in the State, a strict vigil must continue to be enforced all along the frontiers and all attempts at infiltration must be neutralized.
After hoisting the tricolour at the State level function on the occasion of the 62nd Republic Day at Maulana Azad Stadium here this morning, the Governor emphasized that while being committed to resolving all issues through non-violent approaches, ‘we must not commit the mistake of thinking that all threats to peace have been eliminated.’
The Governor stressed that while carrying out anti-militant operations, the security forces must ensure strict adherence to the Standard Operating Procedures as the State Government remains committed to ensuring zero tolerance of human rights violations. Lauding the security forces for their devotion to duty, the Governor said that ‘we are grateful to the officers and men of all the security forces for their valiant devotion to duties in the most difficult circumstances, even at the cost of their lives.’
The First Lady, Usha Vohra, Chief Minister, Omar Abdullah, Speaker, Legislative Assembly, Muhammad Akbar Lone, Deputy Chairman, Legislative Council, Arvinder Singh, Legislators, Judges of the High Court, senior Civil, Police and Army officers, political and social activists, prominent citizens besides a large number of people were present on the occasion. Former Chief Minister Mufti Muhammad Sayeed was also present.
The Governor said that last summer witnessed two singularly sad happenings. First, the unfortunate incident of a sudden cloudburst in Leh which caused enormous human loss and large scale devastation. He added that the Prime Minister visited Leh and announced a special package of Rs. 125 crore under the PMNRF for the required relief and rehabilitation measures to be carried out. The Chief Minister also made several visits to the affected areas to review progress of the relief work being done there. He said that it is gratifying to learn that there has been fair progress in restoring and, where required, rebuilding the infrastructure which had been extensively destroyed by the flash floods. There are also reassuring reports that the affected population is steadily returning to normal existence, he added.
Referring to the second sad happening, the Governor observed that the prolonged unrest in the Valley, virtually throughout last summer, resulted in the loss of many innocent lives, enormous economic losses, closure of functioning on almost all fronts and the irreparable disruption of the entire education system which caused severe damage to the careers of the student community.
Irrespective of the causes which led to this turmoil, he said, the events of last summer have been most painful and saddening for every one. He once again conveyed his deep sympathy to the families of all those who had lost their dear ones during this unrest. He appealed to all parents to counsel their children against being misled by unscrupulous elements and getting involved in violent activities. He said that the events during the last three summers have shown that resort to violence results in enormous human and economic losses and the ruination of educational schedules. The non- functioning of public institutions results in the disruption of normalcy and serious retardation of the entire developmental process.
He said that we must recognise that issues involving contrary positions cannot be resolved through violent agitations and confrontations and the time has come for us to commit that all contentious issues shall be resolved peacefully, through conciliation and meaningful dialogues. The Governor said that some months ago, the State Government announced a Rehabilitation Policy to enable the return of those who had crossed over to PAK when the turmoil began and who now wish to relinquish violence and return home. Under this policy those who choose to give up the path of violence and destruction will be enabled to lead normal lives and contribute towards the promotion of peace and prosperity in the State. Referring to the liberal financial support being provided to J&K by the Centre, the Governor said that the Government of India has been extremely responsive to the needs of our State and generous financial support has been provided from year to year.
He added that for the current year, we have a Plan Outlay of Rs. 6000 crore, which is the highest ever given to J&K, and a further provision of Rs. 1200 crore under the Prime Minister’s Reconstruction Plan. He said that we need to take full advantage of this liberal assistance for ensuring the equitable and balanced development of all the three regions of the State. The Governor said that revenue income of the State has also shown improvement. A growth rate of 17% in our VAT collection is one of the best in the country. However, it is a matter for concern that while the Non- Plan Revenue expenditures have continued to increase there has been no improvement in the collection of non-Tax revenues, which needs to be improved and speeded up.
The Governor said that the Government has identified Roads, Energy, Water Supply, Health and Education as the thrust areas and the implementation of programmes in these sectors is being regularly monitored. He said the Mughal Road Project, which is nearing completion, will not only provide an alternate and much shorter road link between Jammu and Kashmir regions but also bring greater economic prosperity to the people of both the areas. The commencement of a large number of projects under the PMGSY, across the length and breadth of the State, particularly in the hitherto un- connected areas, has given a significant boost to the road building activities in the rural pockets of Jammu and Kashmir, which would boost socio-economic development of all areas of the State.
He said that presently, the Kashmir Valley Railway provides convenient, speedy and inexpensive transport facility from Baramulla to Qazigund and as soon as the Udhamapur-Qazigund section is commissioned, Kashmir shall achieve rail connectivity with the entire country. This will bring very large economic benefits to the people of the State. He said that side by side, the 4-laning of Jammu-Srinagar National Highway shall significantly reduce the distance and time for travelling to Kashmir. The Governor said that to address the problem of unemployment the State Government has, last year, launched the Sher-i-Kashmir Employment and Welfare Programme for Youth under which several initiatives have been taken to create opportunities for employment and, side by side, avenues for the educated youth to upgrade their skills. He urged the youth to come forward and optimally benefit from it. The Governor said that the State Government has taken several initiatives for implementing the Prime Minister’s Package for the Return and Rehabilitation of Kashmiri Migrants. He emphasized that considering its importance, this programme would need to be vigorously pursued for securing timely completion.
The Governor said that to further strengthen our vibrant democracy, it is essential to establish a frame work of strong and stable institutions which will secure answerable involvement of elected representatives in the decision making processes at the grass root levels. The State Government has been committed to establishing institutions of decentralised democracy. “I trust that no more time will be lost in removing any existing impediments and holding early elections for establishing re-vitalised rural and urban self- governing institutions, to fulfill an important commitment to the people of the State” he said. The Governor said, “the State Government has initiated certain steps to energize the functioning of the administrative apparatus in the districts and to achieve this objective the Secretaries to the Government have been assigned responsibility for guiding, advising and assisting the Deputy Commissioners in resolving existing and emerging problems. The Chief Minister has been visiting the Districts to review the implementation of various programmes and has also been holding video conferences with the field officers”.
The Governor added that the people of Jammu and Kashmir have placed high hopes on the Government. The Government must meet the people’s expectations as they are its greatest strength and with whose support the State can march on the road to peace and progress. The State Government has recently taken certain initiatives to strengthen preventive vigilance. Continuing steps would need to be taken to contain and eliminate corruption. For this purpose, it shall be necessary to take all required measures for progressively improving transparency and accountability in all arenas of governmental functioning.
In this context, the State Government cannot afford to lose any more time in discharging its commitment to establish the State Information Commission and enabling the State Accountability Commission to become effectively operational, he said. The Governor wished the Government and the people of J&K a happy 2011 and prayed that the coming time shall see the resolution of all contentious issues and bring sustained peace and normalcy to the State.
He also wished the Chief Minister, Omar Abdullah, and all members of his Council of Ministers, high success in their endeavour to deliver good governance and take the State speedily forward.
Earlier, the Governor inspected the parade and took the salute at the march-past of contingents of the Army, Border Security Force, Central Reserve Police Force, Jammu and Kashmir Armed Police, both men and women, Jammu and Kashmir Police, Jammu and Kashmir Auxiliary Police, J&K Prisons Police, Jammu and Kashmir Fire and Emergency Service, J&K Forest Protection Force, National Cadet Corps, J&K Ex-Servicemen, J&K Sports Council, children of boys and girls schools besides Bands of Army, JKP, and various schools amidst bright sunshine and pleasant weather.
The tableaus on Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan and on Anti-tobacco as well as Army weapon and equipment display were other highlights of the function. A colourful cultural programme based on national integration and composite heritage of the State and motorcycle acrobatics display by Dare Devils of J&K Police received applause from the large audience in the stadium.
Lastupdate on : Wed, 26 Jan 2011 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Wed, 26 Jan 2011 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Thu, 27 Jan 2011 00:00:00 IST
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