Defends security in J&K under Modi regime
Srinagar: Union home minister Amit Shah on Sunday sought to strike a deep chord with the people of Jammu by assuring them that they will not be sidelined or discriminated against any longer, but at the same time made it emphatically clear that Jammu and the Valley, which comprise the Union territory of J&K, will be developed together.
“I came to Jammu today to say that the time of injustice to the people of Jammu is over. Now no one can do injustice to you. Jammu and the Kashmir Valley will now see equal growth,” he said, while addressing a public meeting in Jammu’s Bhagwati Nagar area.
The home minister reiterated what he had said in Srinagar a day ago that those who are trying to disrupt the era of development in J&K, which started after the abrogation of Articles 370 and 35A, will be dealt with severely. “Some people are trying to interrupt development here, but I want to assure you that no one will be able to or allowed to disturb the era of development,” he said.
He said it (October 24) was the birth anniversary of Prem Nath Dogra, co-founder of Jammu Praja Parishad and former president of the Jan Sangh, who worked for the total integration of J&K with India. “The people of India can’t forget him. He along with Syama Prasad Mookerjee gave the slogan that in a country two Vidhan (constitutions), two Nishan (flags) and two Pradhan (prime ministers) will not work”, he said.
He added: “Jammu is the land of temples, of Mata Vaishno Devi, of Prem Nath Dogra, the land of the sacrifice of Syama Prasad Mookerjee. We won’t let the people disrupt the peace in J&K.”
Mr Shah, who is on a three-day visit to J&K, reiterated that questions were being raised about security, but those who do it should know that the violence has only reduced in the Union territory in recent years. He said: “As many as 2,081 civilians were killed between 2004 and 2014, which is 208 every year, while between 2014 to 2021 only 30 civilians a year have lost their lives. We are not satisfied as we want to build a situation where nobody loses their lives and terrorism ends completely.”
Talking about the economic growth of J&K, he said that when a new industrial policy was introduced in the UT, “three families that exploited you used to mock us… saying who will come here, but due to the Prime Minister’s feat, Rs 12,000 crores in investments has come till now”. He added: “I want to tell you that Rs 51,000 crores in investment will come before 2022, giving lakhs of jobs to the youth.” Making an appeal to the young people of J&K to be part of this growth, the home minister said: “If the youth join the development of Jammu and Kashmir, terrorists will fail in their sinister design.”
Criticising the politicians who ruled J&K until 2018, he said: “What did these three families give to Jammu and Kashmir for 70 years -- 87 MLAs, 6 MPs. Modi Ji has done the work of making 30,000 people elected representatives, a panchayat has been formed in every village. Now the ‘dadagiri’ of these three families will not work.”
Later in the day, the home minister inaugurated the new campus of the Indian Institute of Technology, Jammu. Built at a cost of Rs 210 crores, the campus has all the facilities like a hostel, gymnasium, indoor games, along with higher education for students. He also laid the foundation stone for various development projects and paid obeisance at a gurdwara in the Digiana area on the periphery of Jammu city. On Sunday evening, Mr Shah had a meeting with several political leaders, including MPs and former legislators of the BJP.