A Few Vested Interests Hampered Process Of Development In J&K: LG15 February 2021
Jammu: Asserting that the process of uprooting the fear of militancy is going on at a rapid pace in Jammu and Kashmir, Lieutenant Governor (LG) Manoj Sinha has said the Union Territory has a development deficit of 73 years and there would be challenges to fill the gaps, but his administration is fully prepared to deal with it. He also said the aspirations and dreams of the people of Jammu and Kashmir were suppressed by 'a few people' under a thoughtful strategy. The LG made the remarks during the release of a book, titled 'Tipane Kashmirchi (notes on Kashmir), untold stories', authored by Arun Karmarkar, in Mumbai on Sunday. 'Militancy is the real enemy of humanity. The process of uprooting the fear of militancy is going on at a rapid pace,' he said. Sinha said Jammu and Kashmir has a development deficit of 73 years and there would be challenges to fill the gaps, but the administration is fully prepared to deal with it. Compared to other states, he said the budget of Jammu and Kashmir has been four to five times more in terms of per capita, yet the development that should have been done, the kind of industrialisation that should have taken place has not happened. 'The people of Jammu and Kashmir were deprived of basic rights. A few vested interests hampered the process of development reaching the doorsteps of the people for decades,' the LG said. He said there is no escape from accepting the truth that deliberately, under a thoughtful strategy, the development of Jammu and Kashmir, the aspirations and dreams of people, were suppressed by a few people belonging to a certain section. 'We have taken another big step to correct the errors of history,' Sinha said, referring to the abrogation of Article 370 of the Constitution. He said on August 5, 2019, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, by announcing the abrogation of Article 370, gave Jammu and Kashmir the status of a Union Territory and fully integrated it into the national mainstream. 'And the conspiracy being run by those certain classes of people against the people of Jammu and Kashmir for a long time was destroyed in an instant,' the LG said without naming anyone, but apparently referring to political parties that ruled the erstwhile state over the decades. Quoting the prime minister, Sinha said, 'Articles 370 and 35A gave Jammu and Kashmir nothing but massive separatism, terrorism, nepotism and widespread corruption.' 'With a population of 1.3 crore, Jammu and Kashmir was not only connected with the mainstream of the country but a new dawn of development and trust has been witnessed across the Union Territory,' he added. The LG observed that the changes that have taken place in the last 18 months have given a determined push to socio-economic development, besides empowering the common people of Jammu and Kashmir for the first time. 'With new economic and industrial reforms, Jammu and Kashmir has become a promising destination for investors,' he said. Speaking on the economic reforms, Sinha noted that a new industrial development scheme of Rs 28,400 crore has been unveiled for attracting investments in the Union Territory, besides creating opportunities for youngsters. With such a scheme and a ready land bank, investors would find Jammu and Kashmir a promising destination for their investments, he said, adding that the Union Territory administration is committed to taking industries up to the block level for an inclusive growth. 'I have visited different parts of the Union Territory continuously in the last six months. Seventy per cent of the population is below 35 years of age and there is no shortage of manpower and resources. We are taking comprehensive measures through initiatives like the Mission Youth to harness demographic dividend and ensure youth's engagement in a constructive way, contributing to the overall development of Jammu and Kashmir,' the LG said.