Lt. Governor Manoj Sinha on Thursday briefed the visiting foreign envoys about the attempts of Pakistan to destabilize J&K and said the years of suffering for people of Jammu and Kashmir ended on 5 August 2019 when the Article 370 was abrogated and the state split into two union territories (UTs).
Referring to the attempts of Pakistan to destabilize J&K, the LG made it clear; “We do not want to lose sight of holistic development, despite relentless attempts by our neighbor to destabilize the security situation and trigger social disharmony by exporting terror”.
The diplomats arrived here from Srinagar where they spent a day interacting with cross-section of the society to ascertain the situation after abrogation of the special status of J&K.
Impressed with the situation, Eritrea ambassador Alem Tsehaye Woldermariam remarked that change is visible in Jammu and Kashmir and said that the envoy’s visit to J&K is an eye opener and improves the understanding of important issues.
Sinha interacted with the diplomats who halted here for couple of hours on their flight back to New Delhi. He said; “Years of suffering for J&K people ended on 5th August 2019. Efforts of PM Narendra Modi ushered the UT in a new era of socio-economic development and empowerment of the people”. He thanked the envoys for making this trip to see reality on the ground.
“We have developed an ecosystem of democratic values, welfare principles and economic development in J&K. Peace, progress, prosperity and people first is my vision for development of Jammu and Kashmir”, the LG told the diplomats.
Referring to infrastructure development, Sinha said; “We are investing more than ever before in infrastructure, industries, education, healthcare, skill development, sustainable livelihood so that every citizen of Jammu & Kashmir has a safe future and earn recognition”.
“Targeted solutions have been devised to address the issues like poverty, health, Skill development of youth, job opportunities and concrete steps are being taken to ensure that benefits of government schemes reach the last mile”, he said.
“With the vision of ‘Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam’, we seek to work together as a team for the prosperity and well being of Jammu Kashmir and global community as a whole”, he told the visiting envoys.
My effort is to create bliss and seeds for flowering of each and every citizen of the UT. You can see blooming of development in UT for yourself and fragrance spreading on the winds, I am sure, will be carried to every corner of the earth, Sinha said.
Soon after their arrival, the envoys met chief justice Pankaj Mittal and other judges of the high court before having a luncheon meeting with lieutenant governor Manoj Sinha.
The envoys interacted with political leaders and members of the civil society before flying back to Delhi in the evening.
The group includes European Union ambassador Ugo Astuto, and envoys of some 10 European countries, including French ambassador Emmanuel Lenain. Envoys and senior diplomats of Bangladesh are also part of the group.
Former Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti was quick in reacting to their visit and said in a rally; “Government of India is busy wooing foreign envoys through guided tours to seek “all is well” certificate. People of J&K have been robbed of their constitutional rights, dissent has been muzzled and hundreds put in prisons without rhyme or reason”.
Reacting to the visit of diplomats, former Chief Minister Omar Abdullah tweeted; “Thank you for visiting Kashmir. Now please send some real tourists from your countries to visit J&K”.
Congress spokesman Manish Tiwari reacted that foreigners can go to Kashmir but a Joint Parliamentary Committee and opposition leaders can’t go.
Panthers Party chief Bhim Singh expressed concern over the centre allowing foreign diplomats to visit Kashmir to look into the emerging situation after abrogation of the Article 370.
“India is a sovereign country and J&K is an integral part of the union and as such foreign diplomats cannot be sent here to assess the internal situation”, he claimed.
He appealed to all the nationalist political parties in the country to ask Prime Minister Narendra Modi about the reason to allow foreign diplomats to visit here particularly at a time when J&K is passing through a political crisis.