N. N. Vohra, Governor Jammu and Kashmir, Thursday said that sustained peace and normalcy is vital to J&K’s future and urged upon all segments of society and to the leaders of all political, social and religious organisations in all the three regions of the State to work shoulder to shoulder for resolving all outstanding issues through dialogue and discussions. He observed that they should also work unitedly to see that Jammu and Kashmir achieves speedy progress and secures its rightful place at the vanguard of the nation.
Greeting the people on the eve of 68th Independence Day of India, in a message, the Governor observed that the people of Jammu and Kashmir have faced varied serious difficulties and gone through a long period of pain and suffering. He said that despite the serious problems which are created by the activities of terrorist groups and the continuing intrusions from across the LoC, there has been a significant improvement in the overall security situation, for which we owe gratitude to the brave officers and men of our Security Forces who have been sacrificing their lives for protecting our country’s territorial integrity.
The Governor observed that the steadily enhancing environment of peace and normalcy has contributed towards the revival of economic activities and added that there has been a significant increase in tourism and, including the two major pilgrimages to the State, well over six and a half million visitors had already visited Jammu and Kashmir since the beginning of this year.
Referring to the recent elections to the Parliament and the smooth transition to the assumption of authority by the new government, the Governor observed that it has been demonstrated, yet once again, that democracy is deeply entrenched in India. He said, “in Jammu and Kashmir, elections to the State Legislative Assembly are due to take place later this year. I trust that the electorate, particularly the young first time voters, shall turn out in the largest ever numbers to freely exercise their franchise and elect a government of their choice. To achieve this objective, and to ensure a peaceful transition in our State, it would be of crucial importance to ensure that normalcy is maintained in the coming months”. He said that the leaders and activists of all the political parties, all the contesting candidates, the voters and the people of the State shall need to play a responsible role for ensuring that the forthcoming polls engender an outcome which enhances stability and enables Jammu and Kashmir to achieve rapid progress on all fronts, to soon emerge as a leading State in the country.
The Governor said that like all youth, the bright young boys and girls of Jammu and Kashmir have their dreams and aspirations, adding that it is the high responsibility of those who are elected to manage the affairs of the State to take all required steps to ensure that the educational system is not subjected to the repeated disruptions which it has suffered in the past years. He said that, on the contrary, our vibrant youth needs to be shown the light and provided all possible support for achieving their avowed goals so that the upcoming leaders can take the State rapidly towards sustained peace, progress and prosperity.
The Governor said that since the attainment of Independence our country has secured commendable achievements on varied fronts. However, the failure to achieve equitable outcomes in certain crucial arenas has led to a situation in which a significant percentage of our population has been unable to cross the poverty line. He emphasised that for all our people to enjoy the fruits of freedom and receive their due share in the nation’s growth and prosperity it is of crucial importance that all development programmes, particularly the poverty alleviation programmes, are executed with utmost efficiency, total accountability and complete honesty.
The Governor said that with continuing support from the Government of India, the State Government is implementing programmes for promoting people’s welfare and securing growth and development in almost every arena. He observed that, as past experience has amply demonstrated, the ongoing endeavours shall yield the envisaged results only when the administrative apparatus carries out its tasks strictly within the planned time-frames, effectively ensures against any kind of slippage and ruthlessly eradicates corruption at all levels.
Referring to the celebration of Indian Independence Day, the Governor observed that on this auspicious occasion we must pay homage to the great leaders who carried out a prolonged struggle for freedom and made untold sacrifices to liberate India from the colonial yoke. He said that we must also remember and pay tribute to the outstanding personalities, with lofty visions and uncompromising ideologies, who drafted the Constitution of India which is continuing to serve as the unassailable keeper of the national conscience.
Conveying his good wishes to Mr. Omar Abdullah, Chief Minister, and his Council of Ministers, the Governor greeted the people of Jammu and Kashmir on this joyous occasion and wished them a bright and prosperous future.