Jobs in J&K should be reserved for locals: Rajni Patel

Senior Congress leader Rajni Patil on Monday said that jobs in J&K should not be given to outsiders.

The former Parliament Member from Maharashtra who has been recently appointed by Congress as in-charge of its J&K affairs addressed leaders and workers at the party’s Srinagar office on MA Road. She is currently on a five-day tour to J&K.

“You had a special status, like when I was heading Himachal Pradesh, there is also Section 118 under which no outsider can purchase land there. Here also no outsider could purchase land, there was similar provision for it. This was your special status. There was nothing like as if you were getting a free ride,” said Patil addressing Congressmen.

She added: “Every day you undergo a difficult test. We are living comfortably in Maharashtra. But you people have to (struggle) everyday.. .When I was coming from the airport today, there was some encounter going on. We always reiterate this couplet: ‘Kashmir is a paradise’. But every day the lives of people of this Paradise have to undergo a difficult test of their lives.”

She said jobs in J&K should not be given to outsiders, while taxes imposed by the administration are “back breaking”.

“The taxes imposed by the JK administration, those are all back breaking—toll and other taxes, we will also fight for it,” she said.

“This fight has now started and I am sure Inshallah you will fight this well,” she said.

She also said Congress will fight for restoration of J&K’s statehood.

“Our first demand from Congress and Mir sahib is that first of all there should be restoration of statehood. We will fight for it until our last breath. We along with our leader Rahul Gandhi, the entire Congress party will fight shoulder to shoulder alongside you for it and this state should get statehood back. This will be our demand,” she said.