There Is A Magical Change in J&K: LG Sinha


Jammu- Asserting that no one can oppose India or the Tricolour in Jammu and Kashmir, Lt Governor Manoj Sinha on Saturday said his administration, with the support of the Centre, is working to dismantle the terrorism eco-system in the Union Territory.

Addressing a press conference here, he also informed that educational institutions will be reopened within two weeks amid a decline in COVID-19 cases.

The LG announced an enhancement of relief from Rs 5 lakh to Rs 25 lakh to the jawans from Jammu and Kashmir who laid down their lives in the service of the nation outside the UT.

Sinha said those who attempt to harm the country's interests will be dealt with strictly.

"In J&K, there is no place for opposition against India or the national flag now. Anyone who tries to raise an objection will be dealt with strictly as per the Constitution," he said.

He said there has been a remarkable decline in terror activities and efforts are on to provide a conducive atmosphere to the people of the Union Territory.

"Over the past two-and-a-half months, the campaign against terrorism saw many a foreign terrorists being killed. I have told many times that it is an ecosystem. Militants are killing innocent or hurling a grenade at the behest of someone who is providing logistic support and misleading and motivating them.

"Operations against terrorists are ongoing, attempts are also being made to further bring down terror recruitment and provide jobs to the youth. We are working to destroy the whole eco-system of terrorism, the Lt Governor said.

He said a system was put in place to ensure not a single penny from the coffers of Jammu and Kashmir or the Centre goes to a person linked with terrorism. We are working on it and have a lot of success in this regard. If there is still some leakage, the work is on to cover that and we will be successful in it.

Sinha said the goal is to provide a peaceful atmosphere to the people like in other parts of the country where people live peacefully.

"The day people here start living like their counterparts in Haryana and Bhubaneswar, the goal will be achieved...the goal is big but we are moving forward in that direction. Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Home Minister Amit Shah are monitoring the situation and reviewing it on a monthly basis, he said.

Comparing the prevailing situation with the past, the Lt Governor said, "There is a magical change in Jammu and Kashmir. Stone pelting has become history and shopkeepers are no longer forced to close their shops under fear.

Shopkeepers are telling me that they have not witnessed such golden days. The progress is good and we will achieve our goal."

Referring to his latest review of the COVID-19 situation on Friday, he said all schools and colleges will reopen within the next two weeks.

Time has come for the opening of schools and colleges.... We are opening classes from 9 to 12 from Monday, and the rest of the classes from next week (February 21). All the schools and colleges will become functional (within two weeks)

"Time has come for the opening of schools and colleges.... We are opening classes from 9 to 12 from Monday, and the rest of the classes from next week (February 21). All the schools and colleges will become functional (within two weeks), he said.

Sinha said his administration would work with all stakeholders to make up for the learning losses due to the pandemic to ensure that children have a better future.

He said he had empowered the deputy commissioners, educational department and divisional commissioners of both the regions to take a decision on this.

Paying rich tributes to the seven army personnel who recently lost their lives in an avalanche during patrolling in Arunachal Pradesh, he said some of the soldiers belonged to Jammu and Kashmir and their mortal remains have been brought to their hometowns for the last rites.

"Jammu and Kashmir jawans who achieve martyrdom outside the Union Territory used to get Rs 4 or 5 lakh. We have now decided to enhance the relief to Rs 25 lakh, he said, adding he had received representation from different quarters for enhancement of the relief.

"The file was in process and was supposed to take a few more days. I directed the chief secretary to begin providing Rs 25 lakh relief with the two soldiers whose bodies reached here from Arunachal Pradesh, he said.

While speaking on the issue of withdrawal of posts referred to PSC/SSB before 31.10.2019, the LG said that only the posts where selections have not been made and results have not been declared were withdrawn.

“In some cases, there are referred posts which have remained stuck since 2004. Now, recruitment rules, reservation laws have been changed. Some posts were also transferred to the Union Territory of Ladakh. Hence withdrawal of these posts was essential to ensure transparent and merit based recruitments,” he said.

The LG assured that these posts shall be put to fresh advertisement within two months for recruitment on fast track basis.

He also announced one-time relaxation to the aspirants who had already applied for the withdrawn posts. This will ensure equal opportunity to all.

“We have ensured free, fair, and merit based selections in the recruitment process. The pending 3000 Class-IV posts will be filled within two months on merit basis,” he said.

Asking the aspirants to not get misled, Sinha said that his administration is sensitive to the concerns of people, especially youth.

“They can reach out to my office, or the office of any senior officers and their issues will be redressed on merit,” he said.

Replying to a question of JDA’s action in Roopnagar area to remove encroachments, the LG said that the action has been taken as per the Rule of Law and as per the directions of Hon’ble High Court.

“We are responsible for safeguarding the rights of rightful and legal allottees of any piece of land, but at the same time, the government also has a sympathetic view on those evicted and is considering every aspect for their settlement as well,” he said.

Sinha warned against miscreants who tried to give a different colour to the anti- encroachment drive and reiterated UT Government's commitment to protect the interests of the tribal communities.

“The government is dedicatedly working for the welfare of tribal communities, which were neglected for the last seven decades. Implementation of Forest Rights Act, individual and community rights certificates, Transit accommodations, scholarships to tribal students etc have brought new dawn in their lives and we are making every effort to bring the tribal community into the mainstream. We are extending the best education and medical facilities, besides offering sustainable employment opportunities to the youth from tribal communities,” he said.

He further said that Rs 73 crore has been allocated for Cluster Tribal Model Village.

“The salary of seasonal teachers has been increased from Rs 4000 to Rs 10000. Further, 500 tribal youth have been selected for specialized skill development programmes and more such youth will be acquainted with the know-how of the skills required for the modern day industries,” the LG said.

“Moreover, 100 smart schools have already been initiated and 100 more will be dedicated to the students of the tribal community soon,” he added.

On the Government's endeavours to promote industries and business sectors in the UT, the LG said that the global investors are eager to invest in J&K.

“Since Independence, J&K had received a meager Rs 14,000 cr investment, and now the New Industrial Development Scheme aims to bring more than Rs 70,000 cr worth investment in the UT,” he said.

The LG also stated that e- tendering and transparency have expedited the project implementation in the UT.

“Now, we are eyeing to complete around 45,000 projects in 2021-22 which is three-times more than the ones completed in previous years,” he said.

“Land Pass Book will be available in three languages- Hindi, Urdu and English so that people can easily get the required information. We have also changed the Land use policy to empower farmers,” he added.

Speaking on the tourism sector and other recent initiatives of the government, the LG said that the J&K UT has emerged as a leader in the tourism sector over the last two and a half years.

He said that rural home stays with OYO group which were started recently at Pahalgam will help in building a tourist infrastructure of world standards in rural J&K.

The LG lauded doctors, health workers, para medics, health department, District administration and the people of J&K for their efforts in the fight against covid pandemic.

Appreciating the hard work and dedication of ASHA workers during covid pandemic and vaccination drive, the Lt Governor announced Rs 1000 per month incentive for 3 months for all 12,789 ASHA workers.

Answering a query on the Delimitation process, the Lt Governor expressed his full faith in the Election Commission and said that the Commission will do the right thing. (With PTI inputs)

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