Strongly advocating dialogue to address the political issues, Chief Minister, Ms Mehbooba Mufti on Wednesday said violence has not changed anything in Kashmir but only brought miseries and bloodshed to the state.
“Violence has changed nothing on political spectrum of Jammu and Kashmir, but brought mayhem, miseries, economic disaster, academic breakdown and social disorder to the State,” the Chief Minister said while handing over appointment orders under SRO-43 to the next of kin of such government employees who have died in harness.
Minister for Industries and Commerce, Mr Chander Parkash, Minister for Rural Development & Panchayat Raj and Law & Justice, Mr Abdul Haq Khan, Minister for Social Welfare, ARI & Trainings and Science & Technology, Mr Sajad Gani Lone, Minister for Finance, Culture and Labour & Employment, Dr Haseeb A Drabu and Minister of State for Housing & Urban Development, Social Welfare, Health & Medical Education, Ms Asiea Naqash were present on the occasion.
Maintaining that the majority of stakeholders in Jammu and Kashmir want resolution of the issues through peaceful political means, the Chief Minister stressed the need for creating conducive atmosphere for reviving the dialogue and resolution process. “Unfortunately, the some sections of the youth resorting to violence are impeding the resolution process instead of facilitating it,” she said adding; “We have witnessed a gory era of death and destruction for the past 26 years. Has it changed anything on ground except inflicting deep and pestering wounds on Kashmiris?” she said and added that instead of facilitating resolution of the issues, it (violence) only left behind a trail of tragedies and pain in almost every household in Kashmir. “It converted our play-fields into graveyards and once happily living families into traumatized souls and mourning households,” she said and adding; “If resolution of political issues through dialogue is not the way out, then what is the way out of the present imbroglio? Tell me what is the solution, other than sitting across the table and talking in a peaceful and amicable atmosphere?” she asked. She urged the people to give peace a chance so that the reconciliation and resolution process can be revived through dialogue and discussion.
Calling for winning the hearts and minds of the people, the Chief Minister said the reconciliation and resolution process which was started in 2002 by the then NDA Government headed by Mr Atal Bihari Vajpayee had shown tangible results on the ground. “The major confidence building initiatives taken during that period had not only helped positively transform the situation in Jammu and Kashmir, but in the whole sub-continent,” she said and added that the peace and reconciliation process in and around Jammu and Kashmir has to be revived with fresh resolve to ensure peace and stability in the State and the region.
Seeking time and space to implement the roadmap laid down in the ‘Agenda of Alliance’, the Chief Minister said her Government’s agenda is not event-related and it is a process which would be taken to the logical conclusion through tangible initiatives at political, economic and administrative fronts including dialogue with all the stakeholders to address the momentous challenges confronting Jammu and Kashmir.
The Chief Minister said her Government strongly believes that nothing is valid and should be happening for Jammu & Kashmir except with the active involvement of its people. “However, the people from all shades of the political opinion shall have to evolve a consensus on a pragmatic and workable solution of the problems confronting the State in the interest of peace and stability,” she said and added that the time has come to strike a new benchmark in light of the global and regional realities for the resolution of the State’s problems.
Ms Mehbooba said while the uncertainties and recurrent turmoil has adversely affected almost all the spheres of life in Kashmir, the youth become its specific target as the violence has consumed nearly an entire young generation. She said the society can’t afford to lose more youth now, and measures have to be taken to safeguard their lives and future. “The need, therefore, is not only to safeguard the precious lives of the youth but to create increasing opportunities for them to develop their personality and their functional capability and make them economically productive and socially useful,” she said and added that such opportunities have to be created on a large scale, to cover a wide spectrum of areas of the human endeavor.
The Chief Minister said the Government is alive to the miserable condition of the distressed families who have lost their children to the senseless violence. “We will try to work out a mechanism to ensure a secure and dignified living for the kith and kin of the victims of violence so that their families don’t have to run from pillar to post to live a normal life,” she said and added that it is the responsibility of the Government to reach out to such families, “and we will not be found wanting in discharging our responsibility.”
Earlier, the Chief Minister handed over appointment orders under SRO-43 to next of kin of those employees who had died in harness, to meet the objective of compassionate support.
The compassionate appointment under SRO-43 were handed-over to 106 beneficiaries from 10 districts of Kashmir division, including 15 from Anantnag, 10 from Budgam, 14 from Baramulla, 07 from Bandipora, 08 from Ganderbal, 14 from Kupwara, 04 from Kulgam, 10 from Pulwama, 20 from Srinagar, and 04 from Shopian.
The Chief Minister said the appointment cases against SRO-43 were pending due to various reasons over a long time. “However, the Government is committed to attend to all these cases on priority and has laid special emphasis on their timely finalization,” she said and added that some cases were also cleared through one-time relaxation of rules to absorb children of those who had died in harness.
Ms Mehbooba also asked the concerned officers to attend to all pending cases on account of compassionate appointment on priority, so that the beneficiaries could get the benefit without further delay.
It was informed on the occasion, that the joining period of 21 days for all those who were handed over the appointment letters shall be considered to commence from today and a circular to this effect will also be issued by General Administration Department. It was also informed that for Jammu division the distribution of compassionate appointment orders shall be organized soon, while as appointment orders with respect to Ladakh region shall be distributed through respective Deputy Commissioners.
Principal Secretary to Chief Minister, Mr Navin K Choudhary, Commissioner Secretary, General Administration Department, Mr Gazzanfar Hussain, Director Information, Dr Shahid Iqbal Choudhary, Deputy Commissioner Srinagar, Mr Farooq Ahmad Lone and other senior officers were also present on the occasion.