The government will move forward in Jammu and Kashmir with the sentiment of embracing all and not by ‘goli and gaali’ (bullet and abuse), Prime Minister Narendra Modi said today as he announced early elections to village panchayats and local bodies in the coming months.
Speaking from the ramparts of the Red Fort, the Prime Minister in his Independence Day speech said his government will move forward in the state by following the path of ‘Insaaniyat, Kashmiriyat and Jamhuriyat’ as shown by former prime minister Atal Bihar Vajpayee.
He said his government wants to ensure balanced development of various regions and communities in Jammu and Kashmir, be it Ladakh, Jammu or Srinagar valley.
The Chief Minister said that the central government is now directly sending huge funds to villages in the state to help ensure speedy development. Through this, elected panches will get more power to take the villages forward, he said.
“In Jammu and Kashmir, Atal Bihari Vajpayee ji has shown us the path and that path is right. We want to move forward on that same path. Vajpayee ji had said we have to move forward to ensure Kashmir’s development on three basic issues of ‘Insaaniyat, Kashmiriyat and Jamhuriyat’.
“Be it Ladakh, Jammu or Srinagar valley, there should be balanced development in the state and hopes and aspirations of common people there should be fulfilled. Infrastructure should be improved and we should move forward with the sentiment of embracing all in Kashmir.
“We want to move forward by embracing the people of Kashmir, who are living with great nationalist feeling, and not on the path of ‘goli and gaali’ (bullet and abuse),” he said.
Modi said irrigation schemes were moving forward in the state and work on setting up of IIT, IIM and AIIMS and the reconstruction of Dal Lake is also being undertaken fast.
“In very near future, we are moving forward towards holding Panchayat and local bodies’ elections,” he said, noting that the efforts are being made to strengthen democratic institutions in the state.
He said the people living in the villages of Jammu and Kashmir and panches were meeting him in hundreds, demanding early elections to Panchayats and local bodies that were stalled for some reasons.
“I am happy to say that in the coming months, the people of Jammu and Kashmir will get an opportunity to exercise their right and set up their own system,” he said.
Governor N N Vohra also said the urban local body and panchayat polls, which have not been organised in the state for several years, will be held from September this year.
He said elections to urban local bodies will take place in September-October while the phased panchayat polls will be held in October-December.
The last panchayat polls in Jammu and Kashmir were held in 2011. The urban local body elections have not been held for nearly eight years.