Gen-X pins hopes on Omar

1 January 2009
The Daily Excelsior

Jammu: With Omar Abdullah set to take over as the new Chief Minister, youths of Jammu and Kashmir are pinning their hopes on the young leader to address issues like under-development and unemployment, which they feel are the 'root causes of militancy'. 'We have high hopes from Omar as he is one of us and thinks like youths. His priorities should be to check unemployment, develop infrastructure and rid J&K of militancy and uncertainty,' Vimal Choudary, an MBA student of Jammu University, said. Noting that unemployed youths were being misused by militant outfits in the State, Choudary said, 'Omar should focus on channelising youths towards jobs by focusing on building information parks, industries, bio-tech and pharma units and bring investments to J&K.' Echoing similar sentiments, a few other students said they expect Omar to develop the State’s twin capitals - Jammu and Srinagar - on the lines of Bangalore, Hyderabad and Pune. Omar, who has the experience as Union Minister, will have to formulate his programme and policies to give a fillip to tourism, handicrafts, horticulture besides industry and showcase them on the international arena, they said. 'First thing, he should do is to end the regional and rural-urban divide in the State,' a teacher Sanjay Pandit said. A Wani, a dental surgeon, felt that Omar should be allowed to run the Government without any interference from the political veterans. 'We feel he would do the best and change the face of J & K as a developed State,' he said. The educated youths felt that the leader has the energy to resolve the problems related to water supply, power and roads. 'For the first time in the history we will have a CM of our age and our thinking. Before Omar, all the CMs were above 45 years,' said 37-year-old Puneet Kumar, an officer who aspires to work with the new CM. Apart from youngsters, elders too have high hopes from the incoming Chief Minister. 'I hope that the State would now move on the path of development. He is raw and pure. Corruption and nepotism that has eaten old generation will not affect him and he will focus on deliverance,' said a former Army Officer, Bhawani Singh. Other veterans feel that as the CM, Omar should address the basic needs of the people, provide employment avenues, industrialisation, weed out corruption and eradicate terrorism to bring permanent peace in the State.