Abrogation of Article 370, 35(A) was imperative for developed J&K: LG Sinha

Hoists Tricolour at Srinagar, says ‘J-K on a new journey of normalcy and development’
Srinagar, Aug 15 :Srinagar:Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha on Saturday said that abrogation of Articles 370 and 35(A) was imperative to make Jammu and Kashmir a developed and dignified Union Territory and added the decision taken last year were “historic” as it will pave way for peace, prosperity and comprehensive development of J&K in times to come.
According to Kashmir News Service (KNS), LG Sinha who hoisted tri-color in Sher-e-Kashmir Stadium, Srinagar here said that Article 370 and 35(A) was big obstacle for overall development of J&K and its annulment was imperative to make J&K a developed Union Territory.
“A new era of normalcy and development has dawned in Jammu and Kashmir in the last one year”, LG Sinha said and urged upon youths to engage in mainstream that helps the nation to progress.
Sinha asserted that the government is committed to provide a better alternative that stands for development, welfare and social transformation for the people of Jammu and Kashmir.
“After the constitutional change enacted in 2019, the central government took not one or two, but historic 50 decisions to transform the face of the region. A new era of normalcy and development has dawned due to the changes effected in the last year”, LG Sinha said while rferring to the abrogation of Article 370 and Article 35-A in August last year.
The LG said the government has five main guiding principles – to put in place a just and transparent system of governance, a thriving grassroots level democracy, maximizing the reach of government welfare schemes; accelerating economic development and creation of employment.
Sinha said some “wrong decisions” were unfortunately taken after independence which inevitably led to resentment in the hearts of the people of Jammu and Kashmir, and distanced them from rest of the country.
Sinha said his administration stands by all those who are committed to and strive towards strengthening democracy in Jammu and Kashmir.
The Lt Gov laid five targets for his government, which he said would be transparency in governance, grassroots democracy, people’s welfare, accelerated development and creation of employment opportunities.
He said former prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee laid great emphasis on ‘insaniyat’, ‘jamhooriyat’ and ‘Kashmiriyat’.
“But humanity conceded defeat to terrorism for decades in Kashmir, democracy suffered at the hands of vested interests, and Kashmiriyat was massacred to appease the hatred that ensued. It is a matter of great sorrow that the legacy of cultural syncretism has been eclipsed by the vicious story of sectarianism,” Sinha said.
He said they wanted to “transform the narrative” once again.
The LG said he was deeply impressed by the spirit of the Hindu-Muslim unity in Jammu and Kashmir.
Lt Gov Sinha also recalled sacrifices by countless freedom fighters.
“This day inspires us to preserve and protect the Independence and integrity of our country and create a poverty-free, disease-free and illiteracy-free society,” he said.
The Independence Day function was held peacefully amid tight security.
The authorities also suspended the mobile internet for several hours as a precautionary measure. However, mobile phone services were not suspended. Strict restrictions were imposed in Srinagar to ensure peaceful Independence Day function.
Meanwhile according to the government statement in his Independence Day speech, the Lt Governor Manoj Sinha observed that 2019 Constitutional change has led to 50 decisions to usher in a new era of normalcy and development in J&K.
He laid 5 principles of his Government viz transparency in governance, empowering grassroots democracy, people’s welfare, accelerated development and creation of employment opportunities.
He also announced an additional 25 lakh insurance cover for Health Workers for working selflessly during COVID pandemic. This is in addition to the 50 lakh insurance cover offered by the Central Government.
Giving details of the Government’s initiatives, the Lt Governor said that New Domicile Rules and Reservation Policy shall provide equality and justice to the deprived sections like West Pakistan Refugees, Pahari-speaking people, Safai-Karamis and women married outside J&K. Reservation policy is also being made more effective and inclusive, he added.
The Lt Governor said that J&K is at the forefront of the implementation of PM Jan Arogya Yojna – Ayushman Bharat with 30 lakh beneficiaries. The Lt Governor announced the benefits of JK Health Scheme to One Crore more beneficiaries making it the first of its kind scheme in the country covering Universal Health Insurance for the citizens.
The Lt Governor Sinha recalled sacrifices by countless freedom fighters & offered tributes & gratitude to them. “This day inspires us to preserve & protect the Independence & integrity of our country & create a poverty free, disease free & illiteracy free society”, he added.
The Lt Governor also expressed his gratitude to J&K Police, Central Paramilitary Forces and the Brave Jawans of Military, who offered the ultimate sacrifice to ensure the integrity and freedom of the nation, and ensure that the citizens of the country live a secure and peaceful life. This is the occasion to remember Ajay Pandita and Wasim Bari, who laid down their lives to defend the idea of India, he added.
“J&K people had upheld national integration during the partition. This place is remembered for bravehearts like Brig Rajinder Singh and Brig Usman, and is the land of Rishi Kashyap, Prophet Mohammad, Guru Nanak & Buddha”.We have to carry forward this legacy of religious inclusivity, he continued.
The Lt Governor remembered the time honoured tradition of J&K from Kalhan’s Rajtarangini to Shankaracharya’s Advaita, Sufi Islam to Buddhist philosophy of Mahayana reflected in the peaceful & syncretic co-existence in the inhabitants of this land.
He said that youth has the power of transformation, his own student life was marked with activism; he asked youth of J&K to direct their activism towards development as future leaders of the country.
The Lt Governor observed that the people of Jammu and Kashmir fully immersed themselves in upholding the spirit of national integration. J&K has always been an integral part of the existence of India in each and every respect – culturally, politically, socially, and spiritually
The people of this land have always steadfastly rejected this bigoted ideology. The rejection is directly a consequence of the fact that the labels ‘Hindu’ and ‘Muslim’ have always been only descriptions rather than manifestation of a division in J&K.
Jammu and Kashmir has offered an invaluable contribution to nurture and ensure a cultural harmony and peaceful co-existence between Hinduism and Sufi Islam. The traditional cultural harmony of Jammu and Kashmir has ensured the peaceful co-existence of Hindus and Muslims, mutual respect for their places of worship, and offered a new paradigm of the protection of not just cultural mores, but also religious rituals.
We want to make development, peace, progress and social harmony the most integral part of the narrative of Jammu and Kashmir. It is my strongest and cherished belief that Jammu and Kashmir will immensely contribute to the realization of our dream of ‘Ek Bharat Shreshta Bharat’, he continued.
The Lt Governor affirmed that the Government is committed to providing a better alternative for the people of Jammu and Kashmir. An alternative that stands for development, welfare and social transformation.