Soz asks party Ministers to increase visits to remote areas

Gopal Sharma
RAJOURI, Apr 21: Former Union Minister and PCC president Prof Saif-ud-Din Soz today advised his party ministers to increase frequency of their visits to the remote and backward areas of the State and give special attention towards development of such areas.
Addressing a public rally at Kotranka (Budhal) in district Rajouri today, Prof Soz said that backward areas should be identified which have lagged behind in various spheres of developmental and other activities of life. Such areas should be given more attention by the Government. He advised his party ministers to pay more visits to such areas and listen to the grievances of people and address their problems. He said Kotranka and Budhal areas should get special attention from the Government.
Referring to the strengthening and empowerment of the basic democratic institutions, Prof Soz said Panchayati Raj was necessary for the equitable development of all parts of the State. He claimed that Congress party was committed for full empowerment of Panchayati Raj system in the true spirit of 73rd and 74th amendment of the Constitution in order to make them fully vibrant institutions of democracy for the service of people so that the elected representatives have the adequate powers with regard to development and other needs to streamline the system of governance for effective delivery of welfare schemes meant for the people.
While stressing the need for better Indo-Pak relations, the PCC chief said that improved relations between the two neighbouring nations was better for the people of this State who have suffered a lot in view of militancy. India and Pakistan have to live together in the atmosphere of peace, friendship and cooperation. That nation has also realized after suffering a great loss because of sheltering terrorist activities on its soil. He said militancy in this part has left many tearful memories but could not disturb the religious brotherhood of worst affected areas. “Dialogue is the only solution to all sorts of problems in democratic set up and futility of gun has been realized by one and all after lot of destruction and loss of precious lives”, Prof Soz maintained.
PCC chief further said that the civil society in Pakistan wanted friendly relations with India and strengthening of confidence building measures to further normalize relations and peace in the region. He said during his recent visit to Pakistan as leader of a goodwill delegation, the civil society in Pakistan was overwhelmingly in favour of more CBMs between two countries.
The rally was also addressed by Congress ministers R S Chib, Raman Bhalla, Sham Lal, Shabir Ahmed Khan (MoS), MP Madan Lal Sharma, MLC Ravinder Sharma. Local leaders Th Puran Singh and Iqbal Malik highlighted the problems of the people. They demanded creation of new tehsil, compensation for land under various projects, special recruitment drive for youth of the area, degree college at Kotranka and promotion of tourism.
Minister for Technical Education Mr Chib said that one ITI will be opened at Kotranka and a stadium at the cost of Rs 10 lakh will be constructed in the area. He said proposals for the same have been sent to the Centre. Health Minister Sham Lal assured to fill up vacant posts of doctors in the area and Ramban Bhalla said that land compensation cases would be expedited.
MP Madan Lal cautioned the people against the forces which create wedge between the people of various communities on the name of religion and region. He also promised to provide Rs 10 lakh from his MP LAD funds for construction of stadium there.