Stone pelting at the security forces in Kashmir has to a great extent vanished as Jammu and Kashmir on Friday completed one month of Governor’s rule with the reins of the administration in the hands of a seasoned bureaucrat NN Vohra.
Incidents of stone pelting at security forces and waving of Pakistani and ISIS flags had become a daily routine in the valley during the three years rule of the PDP-BJP government that came to an end on 19 June when the BJP withdrew support to the then Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti.
Stray incidents of stone pelting are now being witnessed at the sites of encounters between the security forces and terrorists where miscreants among residents of neighbouring villages emerge to make attempts for escape of the hauled terrorists.
The turmoiled state has witnessed remarkable change in governance during the past 31 days during which Governor Vohra has issued a number of directives aimed towards good governance.
Vohra has also taken steps to tighten the noose around the corrupt officialdom that had become a major irritant for the common people. He has ordered the state vigilance organization not to spare any officer found indulging in corrupt practices. The organization had so far been laying its hands only on petty officials as a result of which Jammu and Kashmir has come to be known as one of the most corrupt states of the country.
In a step towards good governance, the bio-metric attendance system has been operationalised in the civil secretariat as a result of which the attendance of officials during the past one month has increased to about 80 percent from the 45 percent during the PDP-BJP rule.
The grievance cell of the government has been recharged and according to official figures the cell received 5242 complaints between 20 June and 16 July and 4271 of these have been disposed or forwarded to the concerned quarters for timely redressal.
Moreover, days have been fixed for the three advisers of the Governor to directly meet the public in Srinagar and Jammu to listen to grievances of the people. The exercise was missing during the coalition rule when the general complaint was that the ministers were inaccessible even to their own electorate.
Vohra has taken steps to clear the ground for holding the Panchayat and urban local bodies elections around September that were pending for the past over two years as Mehbooba had been postponing these on one pretext or the other.
The State Administrative Council (SAC) headed by the Governor has restored the true democratic spirit of the Panchayat elections by scrapping the earlier government’s order and making provision for direct election of sarpanch.
In a major step, Vohra has ordered cleansing of the cross-LOC trade between India and Pakistan occupied Kashmir (POK) that had become a source of narco-terrorism and hawala trade in the state.
Among the major tasks before Vohra now is to remove the sense of discrimination among residents of the Jammu and Ladakh regions who have been complaining of stepmotherly treatment by the successive governments.
The J&K Public Service commission too requires cleansing as serious irregularities have been pointed out from time to time in its functioning. The case pertaining to alleged forging of signatures of one of the members of the commission is still awaiting action although nearly a year has passed after the forensic science laboratory confirmed the criminal deed.