Valley youth not to face problems faced by their parents, grandparents: PM Modi

‘Eradicating distances, improving connectivity Govt’s priority’
He was addressing the mammoth gathering at Palli Panchayat on the momentous occasion of “National Panchayati Raj Day”.
He was addressing the mammoth gathering at Palli Panchayat on the momentous occasion of “National Panchayati Raj Day”.Mir Imran for Greater Kashmir

Palli (Samba): Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday made a renewed effort to reach out to the youth of J&K, in particular, those from the valley with a solemn pledge to “eradicate their sufferings and resolve their all problems.”

“I want to say something to the youth of J&K. Friends, just have faith in me and believe my words. Particularly, the youth of the Valley should mark my words. You will not have to spend your life in agony confronted by your parents and your grand-parents. You will not come across in your life with those sufferings or difficulties. I’ll make it happen. I’ve come here to assure you on this account. This is my pledge to you,” PM Modi said.

He was addressing the mammoth gathering at Palli Panchayat on the momentous occasion of “National Panchayati Raj Day”. Palli, in Samba district of J&K was especially chosen for him this year for his annual interactive session with the representatives of Panchayati Raj Institutions (PRIs) to mark the day. He addressed the Gram Panchayats across the country virtually from Palli.

“In the last eight years, our government has worked day and night to strengthen the vision of “Ek Bharat, Shresht Bharat.” When I talk about ““Ek Bharat, Shresht Bharat", then our focus is on connectivity and also removing the "Dooriyan" (distances). Dooriyan Chahey Dilon Ki Ho, Bhasha Ka Vyavhar ya Phir Sansadhanon Ki, Unhein Door Karna Hamari Prathmikta Hai (Distances between hearts or languages or for that matter customs or resources, their eradication and improving connectivity is our very big priority today). We're trying to do it as is conveyed in your Dogri folk song," he added.

At this point of time, he tried to strike the chord with the people of Jammu by referring to the popular Dogri folk song "Mithadi Hai Dogrey Di Boli Te Khand Mithe Log Dogre" winning great applause from the receptive crowd. Earlier at the very outset also, he began his address by wishing the crowd in Dogri.

PM Modi stated that a refreshing change in the work culture, which was marked by fast paced, mission-oriented development, would take Jammu and Kashmir to newer heights of development.

Prime Minister said, “Today is a landmark day in the development journey of Jammu and Kashmir.” He thanked the people of Jammu and Kashmir for their enthusiasm. He said that due to his long association with J&K, he would understand the issues involved and expressed happiness about the focus on connectivity in the projects inaugurated and for which foundation stone was laid in today’s function.

“Projects worth Rs 20,000 Cr related to connectivity and electricity have been inaugurated and the foundation stone has been laid here. To give a new impetus to the development of Jammu and Kashmir, work is going on at a fast pace. These efforts will provide employment to a large number of youths of Jammu and Kashmir,” he said.

“Today many families have also got property cards for their houses in villages. These ownership cards will inspire new possibilities in the villages.100 Jan AushadhiKendras will become a medium to provide affordable medicines and surgical items to the poor and middle-class families of Jammu and Kashmir,” PM said.

Obliquely enlisting as to how the abrogation of Article 370 helped and benefitted J&K, the Prime Minister pointed out that all schemes of the central government were being implemented in the UT and people were being benefitted from them. “People in the villages are the biggest beneficiaries of schemes for LPG, toilets, electricity, land rights and water connections,” he said.

The Prime Minister said, “Celebration of National Panchayati Raj Day in Jammu and Kashmir marks a big change. I have a deep satisfaction and pride that democracy has made way to grass roots in Jammu and Kashmir. “Be it democracy or resolve for development, today Jammu and Kashmir is presenting a new example. In the last 2-3 years, new dimensions of development have been created in Jammu and Kashmir,” he stressed. “For the first time, elections to the three-tier Panchayati Raj system- Gram Panchayat, Panchayat Samiti and DDC have been held in Jammu and Kashmir,” he added.

Referring to the process of inclusion of Jammu and Kashmir in the development journey of the nation, the Prime Minister informed that more than 175 central laws had become applicable in Jammu and Kashmir. The biggest beneficiaries of this had been the women, poor and deprived section of the area, he said.

He also talked about removal of anomalies in the reservation clauses. “Valmiki Samajhas been freed from the fetters that were put in their feet for decades. Today sons and daughters of every community are able to fulfil their dreams. Those who did not get the benefit of reservation in Jammu and Kashmir for years are also getting the benefit of reservation now,” he said.

The Prime Minister dwelt on the role of Panchayats in the development of the country and said, “This ‘Amrit Kaal’ of Independence is going to be the golden period of India. This resolve is going to be realized by Sabka Prayas.”

The Prime Minister said that 75 Sarovars would come up in every district by August 15 in 2023. He urged that these Sarovars should be lined with trees named after the martyrs and freedom fighters. PM Modi also elaborated upon the push for transparency and empowerment of Gram Panchayats. Measures like e-Gram Swaraj were linking processes from planning to payment. “Panchayats will be audited online and a system of citizen charter for all the Gram Sabha is encouraging the Sabhas for taking up many roles,” he said.

The Prime Minister also highlighted the role of women in these institutions and village governance, especially water governance.

Reiterating his push for natural farming the Prime Minister said that it was critical to free mother earth of chemicals as it was harming the land and groundwater. He said, “If our villages move towards natural farming that will benefit entire humanity.” He asked to explore how natural farming could be promoted at the level of Gram Panchayats for these collective efforts were needed. Similarly, Gram Panchayats will play a major role in combating malnutrition with the help of ‘SabkaPrayas.’

“People on the ground have to be made aware about the initiative taken by the central government to save the country from malnutrition and anaemia. Now the rice being given under the government schemes is being fortified,” he informed.

He said that since the introduction of constitutional reforms with regards to J&K in August 2019, the government had been focused on bringing about wide-ranging reforms to substantially improve governance and enhance ease of living for the people of the region at an unprecedented pace. The projects inaugurated and whose foundation stone was laid would go a long way in facilitating provision of basic amenities, ensuring ease of mobility and development of infrastructure in the region, PM MOdi said.

Earlier the Prime Minister arrived at his maiden trip to the Union Territory, other than its border areas after the abrogation of Article 370, at around 11.10 am. At Jammu technical airport, he was received by senior BJP leaders, the Chief Secretary A K Mehta, DGP Dilbag Singh besides others.

PM Modi’s last visit to the erstwhile J&K state was on February 3, 2019 before it was truncated to a Union Territory and Ladakh was carved out as a separate UT out of it.

He, however, had visited the Rajouri sector and Nowshera sector along the Line of Control to celebrate Diwali with the army personnel on October 27, 2019 and November 3, 2021 respectively.

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