Governor for providing ‘secure environment’ to Panchayat representatives

Asks Security Forces Not To Lower Guard; Calls For Sprucing Administrative Set Up


Jammu, Jan 25: Calling for providing a secure environment to the Panchayat members, Jammu and Kashmir Governor NN Vohra Friday said the establishment of Panchayati Raj and devolution of powers to elected representatives in municipal administration would fortify decentralized democratic framework at grassroots level in the State.
The Governor maintained that the security forces cannot even think of lowering their guard, under any circumstances, till sustained peace prevails along the borders with Pakistan. He also called upon the state’s administrative system to work with renewed promptitude, efficiency and accountability.
In his Republic Day the Governor observed that grassroots empowerment would involve the masses in the planning and implementation of various schemes and programmes. He added that the effective establishment of rural and urban self-governing bodies in each of the three regions of the State would be a landmark in the governance history of J&K.
He said a momentous event took place in the State about a year and a half ago, when elections to Panchayats were conducted after a gap of nearly three decades and 80 percent of the voters turned out to elect about 33000 Panchs and Sarpanchs. “I hope elections to establish decentralized democratic set up at Block and District levels will be conducted this year and a secure environment shall be engendered to enable the elected representatives to fearlessly discharge their responsibilities”.
The Governor said that the Government had planned to conduct elections to the Urban Local Bodies last year and, side by side, also carry out the required institutional and taxation reforms to upgrade and rationalize the entire municipal frame work in the State. “I trust that these changes shall materialize in the coming months”, he said.
Vohra said due to the role played by the people of Jammu and Kashmir and the supreme sacrifices made by J&K Police and the security forces, the State is moving ahead on the path of peace and development. “If our people remain committed to thwarting the activities of anti-national elements, the State shall achieve lasting peace and move rapidly on the path of progress and prosperity,” he said and added that growth and development can materialize and sustain only in an environment of peace and normalcy. He called upon to the leaders of all political parties, social, cultural and religious organizations and all other segments of society, in each of the three regions of the State, to close their ranks for the resolution of issues through dialogue and discussion and not through confrontation.
He said during the past two years there has been a decline in the incidence of militant violence. “If there are no adverse developments along our frontiers in the coming time our people can look forward to enjoying the fruits of peace. However, till such time as sustained calm prevails on the north western frontiers our security forces cannot even think of lowering their guard, under any circumstances,” he said.
The Governor said that significant outcome of peace has been the visible surge in the number of tourist arrivals in the State. He said last year, over 12 lakh tourists visited the Valley and over six lakh pilgrims undertook Shri Amarnathji Yatra. “Ladakh region also received a good number of tourists and in Jammu region, over one crore pilgrims undertook Shri Mata Vaishno Deviji Yatra last year,” he said and added that hopefully, this year we shall see a much larger number of visitors to the State. He, however, called for significantly upgrading and enlarging tourist infrastructure in the state.
The Governor said “earlier this month, the Coalition Government, under the leadership of our young Chief Minister, Omar Abdullah, completed four years of functioning and a few days ago the Council of Ministers was reconstituted”. He said that he was confident that if the entire administrative system works with promptitude, efficiency and visible accountability, our State shall soon emerge as one among the top in the country. He wished high success to Omar Abdullah’s endeavors in the coming time.
The Governor greeted the people of Jammu and Kashmir on this auspicious occasion and wished them good health, happiness and prosperity in 2013.

Lastupdate on : Fri, 25 Jan 2013 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Fri, 25 Jan 2013 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Sat, 26 Jan 2013 00:00:00 IST

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