Elections don’t resolve Kashmir but your issues: Malik

Polls being held for betterment: Farooq

Fayaz Bukhari
SRINAGAR, Sept 1: Governor, Satya Pal Malik, today urged Kashmiris to vote in the forthcoming Panchayat elections as they neither benefit India nor Pakistan, and does not resolve Kashmir issue but those of the people.
In his maiden speech at the launch of India Post Payments Bank (IPPB) at SKICC here today, after taking over as Governor of Jammu and Kashmir last week, Malik said: “Neither India nor Pakistan gets benefitted from the elections nor is Kashmir resolved but by this your issues get addressed.”
Governor said that the polls neither benefit Delhi nor Srinagar but the general masses. “The greater truth than the fact is that Panchayat and civic polls are neither for Delhi nor for Srinagar but for the benefit of voters”, he said.
Urging people to vote, Malik said that elected representatives are answerable to the people. “Today you go to the Government officials and they don’t listen to you and tomorrow when there is an elected representative, you can abuse him if he does not listen to you”, he said.
Malik said that the funds that will come to the Local Bodies will ultimately reach to people. “The funds which will come, even if he misappropriates portion of it, he will utilize for development and it reaches to your home”, he said.
He told people that the election is for their benefit and not for that of Prime Minister or Governor. “And I today join Farooq Abdullah to appeal you that please vote in the forthcoming elections as this vote will benefit you. This will neither benefit Prime Minister nor Raj bhawan”, he said.
Malik appreciated National Conference president and former Chief Minister Farooq Abdullah for his boldness. “Presence of Farooq Abdullah encourages me. I appreciate Farooq Abdullah for his boldness. He can say what everyone cannot”, he said.
The Governor said that with the launching of Postal Banking network, another crown has been added to the rich history of Indian Postal services. He said despite introduction of internet and other technologies, the relevance of Post Offices is still intact and it continues to be a major source of communication in the rural and far-flung areas. He expressed happiness on the nation-wide launch of banking services by the Postal Department and hoped that initiative will give further boost to the economic activities in the rural areas where banking services are still not available.
Malik said it is the vision of Prime Minister, Narendra Modi to provide banking access to everyone, especially the marginal sections of the society to ensure benefits of various flagship programmes launched for their welfare and the Postal Banking service will prove an instrumental in this direction. He observed that rural economy will grow further and people in the rural areas will connect with this network and avail benefits of various Government schemes.
The Governor informed that there will be eight branches of India Post Payments Bank located at Jammu, Kathua, Udhampur, Rajouri, Srinagar, Anantnag, Baramulla and Leh and all these branches will start functioning immediately.  He said all 1.55 lakh Post Offices across the country will be linked to India Post Payments Bank by December 31. “The move is likely to take banking services to India’s every corner”, he said.
Meanwhile, former Chief Minister and president of National Conference, Farooq Abdullah, today urged people to take part in the elections as they are being held for their betterment.
Speaking at the same function, he said that these elections are for upliftment of the people. “The Government has announced Panchayat and Municipal elections. It will not settle things between India and Pakistan. It’s for the betterment of your life,” he said.
Abdullah said that many organizations which thrive on the problems faced by the people here will try to sabotage these polls. “Many organizations will try to sabotage this because they thrive on our problems. See the situation today, hotels and houseboats are empty. Traders are weeping.  Nothing has been left for us. For how long will we die like this and reach nowhere. Things will resolve one day but we also need to stand on our feet. It is not easy, some people would not allow us to do it. The forces who thrive on our blood do not want peace here. They will not let it happen”, he said.
The NC president lashed out at New Delhi for raking up Article 35A issue “Delhi has also made mistakes. What was the need to rake up 35 A. Such things sadden the hearts of people here. If hearts are to be connected, Government should try to win the hearts of people here. Without it, you won’t achieve anything. These elections are important if you want to build your future. If you do not want a good future and chose destruction instead, none will stop you. If you want to build the future of your children and want them to compete at the national level bring them to that level”, he said.
Abdullah said that the Indo-Pak relations will normalize soon and urged people to vote. “If schools are closed they would not be able to compete. If you want to build the future of this State then everyone has to work for it. That time will come when we will live in peace with everyone including Pakistan. We have close relation with them our water flows towards them. The relations between India and Pakistan will be better soon. Participate in the elections and elect honest people who can work towards that”, he said.