Mehbooba Hopes PM’s Kashmir Remark Would Herald Change

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Kargil—Chief Minister, Mehbooba Mufti Saturday hoped the remarks made by the Prime Minister, Narendra Modi about Kashmir during his Independence Day speech would bring about a welcome change in the State as it did during the previous tenure of former Prime Minister, Atal Behari Vajpayee.

 

Addressing a largely attended public meeting here, the Chief Minister recalled the turnaround Jammu & Kashmir witnessed after 2002 and how many people friendly steps were taken which improved the situation in the State and between the two neighbouring countries. She hoped the acrimony between Indian and Pakistan would give way to peace and friendship in the near future.

Mehbooba Mufti said her party has been advocating dialogue, reconciliations and peaceful means of conflict resolution eversince its inception and during its earlier regime in 2002 her Party got it executed on the ground to a large extent.

Pitching strongly for opening more historic routes across LoC in the State, Mehbooba Mufti said she has taken up opening of Kargil-Skardu road with the Centre and exuded confidence that with its opening Jammu & Kashmir would become hub of economic activities as it would act as gateway to Central Asia.

The Chief Minister said her Party had promised construction of a tunnel on Zojila pass and soon work would start on it which on completion would mitigate all connectivity problems of the region. She said the road network in the town would be further improved for which she announced the release of Rs. 15 crore. She said her Government has already doubled the honorarium for teachers working in the region.

On the demands put forth, the Chief Minister directed the R&B Department to conduct survey of Panikhar-Kishtwar road which would further improve the inter regional connectivity in the State. She also announced to look into exploring the possibility of air service and take up the issue of railway line to Kargil with the Railway Minister. She said connecting regions in the State is a part of her Government’s developmental agenda.

On the occasion, the Chief Minister kickstarted a water supply scheme for the town to be built at a cost of Rs. 12 crore and which would benefit a population of around 50 thousand in the town. She also laid foundation of a distribution network costing Rs. 19.20 crore which would be completed by the end of next financial year.

Mehbooba Mufti also laid the foundation of Rs. 6.93 crore Das Drethang road which would improve the intra district connectivity in Kargil.

Enroute for two kilometres children welcomed Mehbooba Mufti with playcards and welcome slogans.

Chief Minister, Mehbooba Mufti reached here in the morning on the first leg of her three day visit to Ladakh region.

On her arrival, Mehbooba Mufti was accorded a rousing reception at the airport. She was received by Chairman, Legislative Council, Haji Anayat Ali; MLA, Asghar Karbalai; CEC, LAHDC, Kargil, Kachoo Ahmad Ali; Deputy Commissioner; SSP; members of Hill Council and officers of district administration.

A large number of people dressed in their colourful traditional attire also welcomed the Chief Minister at the airport.

Soon after her arrival here, the Chief Minister drove to Pushkum where she inaugurated a motorable bridge which would connect the village with NH-1D and it has been constructed at a cost of Rs. 4.30 crore.

Mehbooba Mufti also laid the foundation of Tharumsa-Pushkum road which would be constructed at a cost of Rs. 9.54 crore. The road is expected to be completed by 2018-19.

On the occasion, the Chief Minister interacted with the locals and sought their demands.

Deputy Chief Minister, Dr. Nirmal Singh; Chairman, Legislative Council, Haji Anayat Ali; Minister for R&B, Naeem Akhtar; Minister for Education, Syed Altaf Bukhari; CEC, LAHDC, Kargil, Kachoo Ahmad Ali and officers of district administration were present on the occasion.

Later, the Chief Minister visited Kurbathang village where she inaugurated Purik Guest House built by the Tourism Department. She directed immediate landscaping of the compound, black topping of the approach road and interior designing of the guest house.

Young boys and girls, dressed in traditional costumes welcomed the Chief Minister on her arrival at the guest house.

Later in the day, Mehbooba Mufti visited the Degree College, Kargil where she laid the foundation of the additional block and a girls’ hostel.

The additional block would be constructed at a cost of Rs. 5.71 crore and the girls hostel would cost Rs. 5.07 crore.

On the occasion, the Chief Minister interacted with the students of the college who put forth their various demands.

Responding to their demands, Mehbooba Mufti announced construction of an auditorium at the college and another floor to make more space for students. She also announced two buses for ferrying college students.

The Chief Minister announced that Kargil College would soon be covered under her Scooty scheme and also directed introduction of courses like IT, Biochemistry and Statistics at the college. She directed proper landscaping of the college compound and providing sports kits and equipment to students.

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