We will try to work out strong front to provide good governance in J&K: Azad

Former J&K CM and DAP chairman, Ghulam Nabi Azad addressing public rally at Kathua on Sunday. —Excelsior/ Pardeep
Former J&K CM and DAP chairman, Ghulam Nabi Azad addressing public rally at Kathua on Sunday. —Excelsior/ Pardeep

‘DAP to struggle for Statehood; job, land rights to locals’

Gopal Sharma
KATHUA, Oct 16: While reiterating his party’s resolve to wage decisive struggle for restoration of Statehood to J&K and protection of rights of land and jobs to the locals, former J&K Chief Minister and Democratic Azad Party, chairman, Ghulam Nabi Azad today said that he will try to work out a `strong front’ to provide good governance in Jammu and Kashmir.

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While addressing a large public rally at Kathua today, Azad said restoration of Statehood to Jammu and Kashmir will be on the top of his party’s agenda. He said the erstwhile historic State of Jammu and Kashmir has been degraded to the status of two Union Territories, which is not acceptable to the people of J&K. And moreover, it was never a demand of the people from Kashmir or Jammu region.
Azad said DAP has three point agenda for the betterment of J&K, which is to reserve the rights of purchasing lands for J&K people only, reserve the rights of jobs in J&K only for J&K youth and restoration of Statehood.
The DAP Chairman said that Maharaja Hari Singh gave the rights of land and job to the locals only by introducing State Subject in 1927 on the demand of J&K people to protect the rights of State residents.
“I had strongly raised voice in the Parliament but the leadership of the ruling party here is silent over the local issues, which is matter of concern,” he added.
“We will try to work out a strong front to provide good governance to the people. If I get the opportunity to serve people of J&K, I promise you, no innocent will be killed, all living here irrespective of religion will be safe, Statehood will be restored, job and land rights to people of J&K and two crore tourists will come to Kashmir and everyone will get employment,” Azad added.
Former Union Minister said in Jammu, people are worried over the delay in restoring Statehood. After delimitation of Assembly seats, Statehood must be restored,” he said.
“We need it back so that our own people can run the administration. The Assembly polls could wait. The Statehood needs to be restored first, then elections can be held,” he maintained.
“The economy of J&K is at the brink of collapse. There is no sector of its economy– be it tourism, horticulture, transport, or trade — that hasn’t suffered losses in the past two-three years,” Azad said.
There are thousands of unemployed medics, paramedics, engineers, graduates and post graduates waiting for job openings. The situation has become much worse as the industrial sector, which is supposed to absorb the unemployed youths, continues to struggle. What little opportunities were provided by local tourism, manufacturing, handicraft and transportation sectors, have also been clogged by mishandling of situation,” Azad regretted.
Azad said DAP will reach out to the masses and work for the welfare of the people of the Jammu and Kashmir. He said DAP is getting tremendous response from all the districts, tehsils, blocks and Panchayats and its strength is being multiplied every day. He said DAP will never create disillusion among the minds of the people and make tall and hollow claims which will appear far from the reality. “We never believe in the politics of falsehood and deceit,” Azad maintained.
He stressed upon the DAP leaders to hit the ground and launch a mass contact programme to mobilise public support for the party ahead of the forthcoming Assembly elections. He said that DAP is committed to strengthen the communal harmony and social fabric. All the leaders took a pledge to strengthen the party at the grassroots level.
“Our party is committed to honour the urges and aspirations of every segment of the society in all the regions and sub-regions”, Azad said, adding that the cadre must reach out to the people and help them to get solutions to their problems.
Former DyCM Tara Chand said that people of J&K need the services of an experienced politician and a stalwart like Azad. Expressing confidence that more senior leaders will strengthen the hands of Azad in the coming days, he said leaders from various parties are also in touch with them and you will see more and more joinings in the coming weeks.
“People are not happy with the present dispensation, especially after it downgraded the erstwhile State. We require youth and experienced people to pull out J-K from the present crisis, to generate employment opportunities and resolve people’s issues,” he said.
Former Minister and DAP general secretary, RS Chib while speaking on the occasion targeted ruling party and said that ‘good governance’ in J&K is confined to papers only, ground situation belies all the claims of administration. “All that is being claimed by the Government in terms of transforming the region in terms of development, infrastructure augmentation and employment generation is nowhere to be seen by the people of Jammu and Kashmir to this day,” he regretted.
Former Ministers Dr Manohar Lal Sharma and Ch Garu Ram, former Dy Speaker Ghulam Hyder Malik, ex- MLC Subhash Gupta, J&K High Court Bar Association president, MK Bhardwaj, senior leaders Vinod Mishra, Aradhna Andotra, BS Bindu-BDC Chairman and others also addressed the gathering.