KL NEWS NETWORK
Praising the steadfast secular ethos of Poonch, Minister of Education Naeem Akhtar said the mountainous region will again be turned into a cosmopolitan society and it will rise to become source of inspiration for the entire state.
Addressing members of Bar Association Poonch, the Minister said the entire state went through a dark phase but it was a place like Poonch where people upheld the secular ethos. “People here continue to live amicably,” said Akhtar.
The Minister recalled the time when Poonch was a full-fledged state with a distinct identity. “Poonch has produced people like Dr Sheikh Abdullah and Krishan Chander who fought for the issues like women’s education at a time when there was no such concept. Dr Abdullah’s ideas even inspired the revolution of education in entire South Asia,” said Akhtar. “Dr Abdullah didn’t demand a university but he fought and went on to establish one of the biggest educational institutes in the country.”
The Minister said that Post-Partition, Poonch was turned into a border town from being a cosmopolitan city. “The vision of late Mufti Mohammed Sayeed was to integrate Poonch into the world on the level of its exalted history. Mughal road was just one example that brought the revolution in communications, others such initiatives will follow,” said Akhtar. “The tunnel which will make Srinagar journey a mere three hour journey will be made and under Prime Ministers package the national highway linking with Jammu will also shorten the distance with winter capital.”
He said that with such initiatives, the future generation would have a different destiny as of their fathers.
The Minister said that Poonch will become an epicenter of change and it will inspire entire estate with its secular ethos and equality. He advised the people to take pride in their cultural identities and at the same time respect each other’s views. The Minister advised the people to take their destiny in their own hands and collaborate with the government in efficiently executing developmental projects.
Minister for Revenue, Relief and Rehabilitation, Syed Basharat Bukhari also addressed the gathering.