Those demanding autonomy are opposing same for Panchayat representatives: Dr Jitendra

Union MoS in PMO Dr Jitendra Singh addressing locals after laying foundation stone of Seed Processing Plant at Kathua on Thursday. —Excelsior/Rakesh
Union MoS in PMO Dr Jitendra Singh addressing locals after laying foundation stone of Seed Processing Plant at Kathua on Thursday. —Excelsior/Rakesh

Kathua gets Seed Processing Plant

Nishikant Khajuria
KATHUA, Sept 13: Lashing out at National Conference and other opposition parties for their decision to boycott the forthcoming Local Body and Panchayat polls in Jammu and Kashmir, Union Minister Dr Jiten-dra Singh today mocked at these parties’ demand of autonomy for themselves but opposing the same to Panchayat representatives.
“These are the parties which demand autonomy for themselves but are not willing that Panchs and Sarpanchs get this autonomy and flow of fund directly reaches to the Panchayats,” he said while talking to media persons on the sidelines of a function in connection with laying foundation stone of first of its kind Seed Processing Plant at Kathua, here today.

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Dr Jitendra Singh alleged that these parties were interested for the autonomy, which should remain confined to their own families and no other could take benefit of the same. “This is evident from these parties’ opposition to Panchayat and Local Body elections,” he added.
Further claiming that those boycotting the elections have indirectly conceded their defeat even before the polls, Dr Jitendra Singh alleged that these parties were not ready to face the people because of their lost base among masses. “By skipping polls, lack of sincerity among these parties towards democracy has also got exposed,” he said.
“As far as BJP is concerned, democracy means empowerment of people at grass root level and strengthening the same, for which Panchayat polls are necessary means,” he said.
Claiming that Jammu based workers of the opposition parties’ were feeling frustrated over the decision of boycotting Panchayat and Local Body elections, Dr Jitendra Singh called upon these political activists to come into the folds of BJP for participating in the democracy process. ” I appeal these political workers of NC, PDP and other parties to join BJP and be a partner in strengthening democracy at the grass root level,” he exhorted.
In response to a query over the demand for naming Jammu Airport as Maharaja Hari Singh Airport, Dr Jitendra Singh said that BJP was fortunate to wipe out the sins of 65-year rule of Congress and others but the party would not allow anyone to yoke it with wrongdoings of previous regimes.
Earlier, while addressing an impressive gathering of locals and prominent people, Dr Jitendra Singh, who represents Kathua-Udhampur-Doda Parliamentary constituency in the Lok Sabha, exhorted people to take forthcoming Panchayat polls as an opportunity to get themselves further empowered and teach a lesson to those who were opposing the same.
“The conduct of Local Body and Panchayat polls in Jammu Kashmir will ensure direct flow of funds worth rupees one thousand crore to these bodies but those opposing the elections don’t want this to happen as they are still looking for an opportunity to get these funds distributed through Ministers,” Dr Jitendra Singh said and hoped that people, particularly youth, would not allow such anti-democracy forces to succeed.
While pointing towards hilarious aspect of the misguided attempt to link 35-A with local elections, Dr Jitendra Singh said that, despite 35-A, the National Conference president did not find anything wrong in contesting Lok Sabha by-election with mere 7 percent polling, so that he could secure perks and bungalows as an MP and the PDP president found nothing wrong in getting a backdoor entry for her brother into the Legislative Council. “This has yet again exposed the opportunistic politics of these parties,” he added.
Listing achievements of the Modi Government in the last four years, Dr Jitendra Singh spoke of the new Seed Processing Plant, which will benefit farmers not only in Kathua and surrounding districts, but also in the adjacent districts of Punjab and Himachal Pradesh. It will start producing high-quality seeds from April-May next year, he informed.
“This is one of the three national-level Central projects launched in Kathua district within just one month,” said Dr Jitendra Singh and cited the Shahpur Kandi Dam and Ujh Multipurpose Project as the other two such projects. “Together, these three projects will make Kathua an essential contributor to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s mission to double farmer’s income by 2022,” he added.
Dr Jitendra Singh also informed that the Keediyan-Gandiyal Inter-State Bridge will become functional in next two months and North-India’s first-ever Bio-Tech Park in Kathua will probably start operating early next year.
MLA Kathua Rajiv Jasrotia, spoke about the developmental projects brought to Kathua in the last four years with the support of Dr Jitendra Singh.
Former Chairman Backward Classes Board Rashpal Verma, Prem Nath Dogra, Raghunandan Singh Bablu, Janak Bharati and local Surpanch Vijay Kumar were among others who spoke on the occasion and lauded Dr Jitendra Singh’s contribution as an MP.
A Skill Centre was also inaugurated on the occasion in the presence of Divisional Commissioner Jammu Sanjeev Verma and Deputy Commissioner Kathua, Rohit Khajuria.
In another function, later in the day, Dr Jitendra Singh performed the Bhoomi Poojan for setting up a Recreation Park in the heart of Kathua City at a budget of Rs 1.5 crore, with the support of K K Birla Group of Industries.