It is very happy to see that all our colleagues have expressed one voice and one sentiment.
Today, when we talk of Jammu & Kashmir, we should talk about four parts of Jammu & Kashmir: Jammu, Kashmir Valley, Laddakh, and Pak-occupied Kashmir.
I am thankful to leaders of all political parties for the concerns they have expressed about the current situation in parts of Jammu & Kashmir. The rich traditions nurtured by our democracy for last six decades have been biggest strength of unity and integrity of our country. We may have some differences on some issues but when it comes to the integrity and sovereignty of the country, we all stand united.
Like every Indian, I have been deeply hurt by the recent incidents in Jammu & Kashmir. It is very sad to see that children are not able to study, apple produce is not able to reach to the mandis, shopkeepers are not getting their daily income and Government offices are not able to implement works of public interest. The poor are the most affected lot by this situation.
Our existence as the political worker is on account of the people. They are our strength, sources of our energy; In fact, people’s power is a vital part of our public life. Irrespective of whether a civilian or security force is injured or killed, the pain is felt by all of us. My deep sympathies are with their families. We are committed to provide better healthcare services to the injured; we want to restore peace in the Valley at the earliest possible so that people can lead their normal life, can earn their livelihoods, send their children to school and have a sound sleep at night.
We are committed for a permanent and peaceful solution to the issue of Jammu & Kashmir in accordance with the basic principles of our Constitution. We have an open mind and our doors are always open. We are committed to the welfare of every citizen of Jammu & Kashmir. We have been following the path shown by Shri Atal Bihari Vajpayee Ji to find a solution.
Jammu & Kashmir is often said as crown of India. In fact, Jammu & Kashmir is a symbol of age old commitment of equanimity towards all sects, where Hindus, Sikhs, Buddhists and Muslims have been living together for centuries. The state of Jammu & Kashmir is the symbol of our founding fathers’ faith which defines us as one Indian in spite of our diversity. Jammu & Kashmir is not only a matter of our territorial integrity but also defines our nationality. We cannot deny the fact that the security forces have suffered all kinds of injuries and have been attacked in planned manner. In spite of all this, our security forces have shown restraint. The figures show that security personnel have been injured in large numbers.
Even after misleading propaganda by certain elements in Kashmir, the percentage of those spreading confusion & unrest; and those instigating youth is very low in Kashmir. Every Kashmiri wants peace, has faith in Democracy. That’s why even after intimidations by separatists’ elements during every election-which are like festivals of democracy; the Kashmiri public has expressed its faith in Indian Democratic System. Even just before the recent disturbances, high voting was casts in the constituency of CM Mehbooba Ji. Therefore, it is far from being true to call it a public movement.
In some areas certain prohibitions were imposed in order to maintain law and order. This is a legal way of maintaining law and order. Otherwise the lives of peace loving people will be affected adversely. In reality, a common man was not troubled as much by such prohibitions, as he was troubled by continuous strikes declared by separatists’ elements.
During this period, the Amarnath pilgrimage was going on nicely. In addition, the State Government continued to do special work on solar energy in Laddakh region. NEET, CET, UPSC Civil Services Exams were organised as per schedule. Even all essential commodities were provided to citizens. The up-coming period is perfect for tourism. Besides, the Apple crop is about to arrive, which is of paramount importance for the livelihood of a common Kashmiri. Certain separatist elements taking advantage of this time want to disturb the peaceful environment and peace-loving citizens of Kashmir.
The fundamental reason of disturbances in Kashmir Valley is cross-border terrorism promoted by our neighboring country. Due to terrorism normal life in Kashmir Valley is affected. Since the start of Terrorist activities in Kashmir in 1989-1990, the Security Forces have achieved following:
- More than 34,000 AK 47 Riffles were seized.
- More than 5000 Grenade launchers were seized.
- Around 90 LMGs were seized.
- More then 12,000 Revolvers were seized.
- 3 Anti Tank Guns and 4 Anti Air Craft Guns were seized.
- More than 350 Missile Launchers were seized.
- 63,000 kilograms of explosives including RDX and more than one lakh Grenades were seized.
- During this period more than 5,000 foreign terrorists were killed which is almost equal to the strength of 5 Battalions.
When weapons have been seized in such huge numbers, so many foreign terrorists have infiltrated to eliminate people, therefore the world will never accept the false propaganda and lakhs of lies of Pakistan.
Pakistan forgets that it bombs its own Citizens by Fighter Planes in its own land. Now the time has come that Pakistan shall have to answer to the world for the atrocities committed by it against the people in Baluchistan and PoK.
We are fully committed to the fundamental rights of the people. Even our laws against terrorism are more humane, than any other democracy of the world. Our governments and our security forces have shown restraint in dealing with these incidents.
India will fight against terrorism with her full might and resolve. It is our national duty. To consider India’s commitment to the Rule of Law, as a weakness, will be a mistake by the opponents. India is determined to route out terrorism. For us ‘means and ends’ are both important and we are capable to adhere to them.
It is also a reality that Kashmiri Pandits have been displaced from Kashmir Valley who have been living there for centuries in their ancestral home. This kind of atrocity against a particular community is the misdeed of terrorists trained and armed with weapons by Pakistan and their sympathizers, but definitely not the deeds of those who believe in Kashmiriat.
For the all round development of Jammu and Kashmir, a decision has been taken for a development package of more than Rs.80 thousand crore in consultation with the State Government. Under this package not only roads and electricity projects have been included but also development of every region and every section of society of Jammu and Kashmir has been kept in mind. This includes better facility for education of children, employment to youths, modern facility for treatment, facilities for promotion of tourism in the state and special facility for production of fruits in the State.
In order to provide employment immediately, the government has decided that 10 thousand Special Police Officers (SPOs), about 1200 Para Military and about 4000 candidates in 5 IR battalion will be recruited. In addition, about 1 lakh 25 thousand persons will be trained under UDAN and HIMAYAT scheme so that unemployed people could get appropriate employment.
The PDP-BJP government led by Ms. Mahbooba Mufti is making best efforts to address State’s various problems. During the last one month, Government has tackled the situation very carefully in spite of adverse situation. The whole nation stands with the Government.
I would like to reiterate that the Central and State Governments are committed to address the people’s genuine grievances and restore peace in the state. We will strictly deal with the acts of violence, terrorism and anti India activities. At the same time genuine grievances of every person will be heard and addressed.
I would like to reinforce that all the political parties and countrymen will have to fight united against terrorism and destructive forces. At a time when terrorism is spreading its wings across the world and when we are surrounded by terrorism instigated by our neighbor, we will have to fight united the war against terrorism. The government has an expectation of constructive cooperation from all political parties in this matter. All political parties while burying their differences will have to cooperate in this matter to restore peace and prosperity in the state. I fully believe that with the active efforts of the state government and with your full cooperation, we will be able to restore normalcy in Jammu and Kashmir very soon.
I would like to again reiterate about our main steps and policy in respect of Kashmir:
1) It is the duty of any Government to maintain law and order. There will be no compromise with the act of terrorism.
2) In this age, civil society, while integrating with citizen activities, will be promoted as per the democratic traditions.
3) We will take forward the political process with reverence, in accordance with the democratic traditions.
4) The process of connecting Kashmiri youth with economic activities of the state will be speeded up.
5) The states in which people of Jammu & Kashmir are residing, whether they are Hindus, Muslims, Sikhs or Buddhists or of any religion, should approach them and should make efforts so that they can contact with their close relatives who are residing in Jammu & Kashmir and can apprise them about their own progress and the progress in other States of India.
6) Ministry of External Affairs should make efforts to approach the people of PoK residing in different parts of world and collect the information about the miserable conditions in PoK and bring it to the knowledge of world community.
I once again thank you all for giving your important views and suggestions in this meeting. I thank you all for supporting the Government. We all are committed to this national spirit that there cannot be a compromise on India’s territorial integrity. We are ready to address grievances of all sections within the framework of the Constitution.