As Govt turns 4, CM admits deficiencies
‘Poor Electricity, Less Jobs, Corruption Are Shortcomings’
Srinagar, Jan 5: On the fourth anniversary of National Conference-Congress coalition government, Chief Minister Omar Abdullah Saturday admitted that poor electricity, less jobs and corruption were the biggest shortcomings of the government. He, however, was quick to add that in the coming months the government will fill up 80,000 vacancies in various departments.
Addressing a massive gathering of Sarpanchs and Panchs at TRC Ground here, the Chief Minister said he took the reign of power on January 5, 2009, not for his personal benefit but for the welfare of the people.
“There are some shortcomings on part of the government. First is the electricity problem. We have no electricity in 21st century,” Omar said. “People ask us why government isn’t able to provide them electricity. Even students question us that they prepare for exams under candle lights.”
Omar said the government has allotted a series of power projects that would generate 1000 MW of power in near future. “The irony is that the percentage of transformers that burn due to overload across India is only five per cent. And in J&K, the percentage is 50 per cent, which is huge,” he said.
Taking a dig at the main opposition PDP, the Chief Minister said those who protest against non-availability of power could not generate even a single MW of electricity during their tenure. “Instead, they (PDP) played politics. My father Farooq Abdullah had managed to start work on prestigious 1200 MW Sawalakote project, but PDP closed the project,” he said. “Now we are trying our best to work out the formalities so that work starts again on the project.”
He said another major challenge before the government was to provide jobs to the unemployed youth. “There are 80,000 posts vacant in various government departments. We have now roped in a special consultant who will suggest how to fill all these posts within a few months,” Omar said.
The Chief Minister said another deficiency of the government was corruption. “We don’t have 2G and 3G scandals here. But the fact remains that people pay bribe for small matters like passports and driving licenses. Now that we have Public Services Guarantee Act in vogue, we hope corruption would stop to a great extent,” said Omar, who was flanked by Minister for Rural Development and Panchayats Ali Muhammad Sagar, MoS Rural Development and Panchayats Aijaz Ahmed Khan, NC MLCs Ali Muhammad Dar, Bashir Ahmed Veeri and Congress MLC Ghulam Nabi Monga. The function was organized by Rural Development Department to highlight its achievements over the last four years.
The Chief Minister said though there were some challenges before the government but that doesn’t mean there was no achievement. “Omar Abdullah doesn’t want to write his report card himself. My intentions are clear. When we will come to you again in 2014, you have to judge us on the basis of our performance and accordingly cast your votes,” he told the audience.
Omar said some people especially the PDP can’t see development. “When we were in opposition, we also could not see what they had done. This is natural. No opposition can see the development of the government,” he said.
The Chief Minister promised the Sarpanchs and Panchs that even if Government of India rejects the Rs 100 crore yearly grant for monthly stipend and insurance cover, panchayat representatives would still get the benefit. “If Government of India doesn’t release the funds, we will keep this amount in the upcoming budget 2013-14,” Omar announced.
He urged the two MLCs, Dar and Monga, who were recently elected from the panchayat quota, to find out who was creating hurdles in devolution of powers of 14 departments to Sarpanchs and Panchs. “Both the MLCs need to work in close coordination with Sarpanchs and Panchs so that their problems are addressed,” he said.
The Chief Minister released a booklet listing the achievements of Rural Development and Law Departments. The authorities had made stringent security arrangements in and around the venue as top police officers like IGP Kashmir SM Sahai, DIG Central Kashmir Syed Afadul Mujtaba and SSP Srinagar Syed Ashiq Hussain Bukhari were also present on the occasion.
Lastupdate on : Sat, 5 Jan 2013 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Sat, 5 Jan 2013 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Sun, 6 Jan 2013 00:00:00 IST
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