Youth have lost faith in system, need to win back their confidence: Malik

‘No harassment, don’t call innocents to police stations’
Hold free & fair elections to civic bodies

Sanjeev Pargal
JAMMU, Sept 19: Governor Satya Pal Malik said today that youth have lost faith in the system and they have to be assured that the path (of militancy), which some of them have chosen, is wrong by creating conducive atmosphere on the ground for nearly 46 per cent youth in the State even as he directed police to ensure no innocent youth is harassed or called to police station saying this can force the youth to follow the “wrong track.”
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“I’ve studied political scenario and other aspects of the situation in the State very minutely during past about one month. I’m not saying this based on the report of Government machinery. Many other organizations and individuals like Sri Sri (Ravi Shankar) followers are working here. The political parties are not a problem here. Neither those groups, a reference to separatists and militants (without naming them), with whom talks are not possible, are a problem. The problem is that youth, who constituted 46 per cent, have lost faith in the system.
“They (the youth) have to be assured a good atmosphere. They need to get a message that the path they have chosen is wrong and the situation is good for them. The youth have nothing to do after 6 pm. They like two sports—football and cricket. Give them opportunities. (Union Minister) Rajyavardhan Rathore told me that the Centre has given Rs 200 crore for sports. Spend it. Give youths grounds to play. You will feel a drastic change among them,’’ Malik said in his address to conference of Deputy Commissioners and SSPs, which was also attended by the Administrative Secretaries and other senior officers of civil and police administration in Srinagar.
Without naming the militants, Malik said the youth who have gone (become militants) won’t return with arguments or dialogue but what we do for others (the youths who are at home). They (the militants) will return if they feel the difference.
“Don’t give a chance to youth to become militants by harassing them. No innocent youth should be called to police station. I got a number of complaints to this effect. I categorically told the Director General of Police that there should be no harassment of the youth. It (the harassment) defames the youth, his family and ultimately some of them take the wrong decision (become militants), which spoil their career. We shouldn’t give the youth a chance to tread wrong path,’’ Malik said.
Asserting that the administration should always listen to grievances of the people including youth, the Governor said: “There was no alternative to listening to the problems and addressing them. Just as a whistle of the cooker reduces pressure, the listening of grievances takes away anger and frustration from the minds of people. Not only listen to the people but give them maximum relief’’.
He reiterated his direction to the Deputy Commissioners to reserve one day in a week for public grievances and asked Advisors to visit one district in a week.
Describing Municipal and Panchayat elections as litmus test for the administration, Malik said the authorities should overcome challenges boldly, courageously and effectively as the polls are being held not for New Delhi or the Governor but for people of the State, who will be benefited with funds directly reaching to the people.
“Kashmir issue, Article 370 and Article 35-A have nothing to do with the elections. This is just wrong campaign,’’ he asserted and said the people must be told that presently they have to approach the Government officers for the funds but after the elections, the money will directly flow to the villages for development and they needn’t go anywhere. He said the officers should make the people aware that the contestants for Sarpanch would get Rs 10 lakh insurance.
He called for holding free and fair elections to Municipalities and Panchayats.
“There had been complaints previously that elections in Jammu and Kashmir were rigged. Hold free and fair elections and give transparent, sensitive and accountable governances to the people,’’ he said.
Citing example of work culture, Malik said late Orissa Chief Minister Biju Patnaik used to send an OB Van to the villages along with the officers for on spot sorting out the issues of people and removing hurdles in developmental works.
“I’m not here to rule upon you but to help you, assist you and boost your morale. Delhi has lot of hopes from youth. You have worked very hard. Your experience should benefit the people,’’ the Governor told the civil and police officers.
Calling for expediting the developmental works, the Governor said he would himself go to any Ministry at the Centre for funds but the development works shouldn’t suffer. He called upon the Deputy Commissioners to identify the works under Rs 8000 crore loan and start work on them.
Advisors to Governor BB Vyas, K Vijay Kumar and Khurshid Ganai, Chief Secretary BVR Subrahmanyam and Director General of Police (DGP) Dilbag Singh were present at the conference besides all Administrative Secretaries, Divisional Commissioners, IGPs of Zones, DCs and SSPs.