People's Support Must To Eradicate Militancy: J-K Gov

26 January 2009
The Indian Express

Jammu: Jammu and Kashmir Governor N N Vohra said on Monday that although extremist incidents and civilian casualties in the state have reached their lowest ever levels, the people's continued support to security forces was needed to completely eradicate militancy. Expressing satisfaction that the state is speedily progressing towards complete normalcy, the governor in his Republic Day address at M A M stadium here said 'The authorities cannot, however, afford to lower their guard and the people must continue to support the forces till residual militancy is completely eradicated in the state.' He said that in carrying out counter-terrorism operations, security forces must continue to respect the sensitivities of the people and effectively protect their fundamental rights. The governor said that the people of the state, particularly the youth, would need to play an important participatory role for achieving the social and economic transformation of Jammu and Kashmir. He said that if the state has to achieve peace, progress and prosperity, the government and the opposition, as well as other social, cultural and religious organisations will have to work closely and collectively. 'The new leadership, which is an ideal combination of youthful dynamism and matured administrative experience, will proceed determinedly and sagaciously to achieve this goal,' Vohra said. Reflecting on the challenges confronting on the state, Vohra said 'Perhaps the most urgent concern relates to doing all that is necessary to ensure that the people across the three regions of J&K collectively counter the divisive designs of the elements inimical to the unity of the state and the maintenance of peace and normalcy.' The three regions of the state are inter-dependent components of one organic whole, he said, adding the only way for the state to progress is for the three regions to develop together and grow in harmony with each other so that no region or section of the population feels discriminated against. Stating that the voters' faith in the electoral system places great responsibility on the elected representatives, Vohra said a key challenge was to effectively meet the expectations of the common man. He expressed confidence that the elected government, led by an young and dynamic chief minister, will address the new found aspirations of the people of J&K and particularly focus on bridging the gap between promise, potential and performance. The governor said the liberal financial support which the central government has been providing to the state should help in adopting a more equitable approach to economic growth and development. He said it was imperative to establish Panchayati Raj institutions to empower the people and ensure inclusive socio-economic growth.