Ahead of BJP government’s massive outreach programme, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday advised the group of union ministers visiting Jammu and Kashmir to spread the message of development among the people not only in the urban areas but also in the villages of the Valley.
As many as 36 members of the Union Council of Ministers will visit Jammu and Kashmir from January 18 to 24 in order to spread words about the government’s policies, particularly those taken in the last five months after the abrogation of Article 370.
36 Union ministers will visit different districts in both the divisions of the newly-formed Union Territory starting January 18. There will be 51 visits to Jammu and eight to Srinagar.
Union Minister Arjun Ram Meghwal will visit Samba’s Puramandal area, Ashwini Choubey will visit Samba, while Jitendra Singh will visit the Jammu region on Saturday.
On Sunday, Smriti Irani will visit Katra and Panthal areas in Reasi district while her cabinet colleague Piyush Goyal will be in Jammu’s Akhnoor region, Mahendra Nath Pandey in Jammu’s Dansal, Meghwal in Kathua’s Basholi and V. Muraleedharan in Kathua’s Bilawar.
On January 20, Union Minister General V.K. Singh (retired) will visit Udhampur’s Tikri region while Pratap Sarangi will be Kathua’s Ramkoat region and R.K. Singh in Doda’s Ghat region. On the same day, Debashree Choudary will be in Marh region in Jammu.
On January 21, Kiren Rijiju will visit Jammu’s Suchetgarh, Kishan Pal Singh Gujjar will be in Poonch’s Mandi and Gen V.K. Singh in Udhampur’s Chenani.
On the same day, Nitin Gadkari will be in Rajouri district, Kailash Choudary in Samba’s Vijaypur, Sarangi in Kathua, Gajendra Singh Shekhawat in Kathua’s Hiranagar, Anurag Thakur in Jammu’s Khour, Arjun Munda in Raesi’s Pouni, Hardeep Singh Puri in Rajaouri’s Sunderbani, while Thawar Chand Gehlot will be in Poonch’s Surankote region.
Sanjay Dhotre will be in Rajaouri’s Kalakote and Santosh Kumar will visit Ramban’s Batote region.
On January 22, Union Minister Purushottam Rupala will be in Jammu’s RS Pura, Gujjar in Poonch, Prahalad Singh Patel in Udhampur’s Ramnagar, Chaudary in Samba’s Cakrambagh, Sekhawat in Kathua’s Barnoti, and Patel in Udhampur’s Majalta region.
On the same day, Renuka Singh will visit Udhampur’s Khoon region, Munda will be in Raesi’s Arnas, Som Prakash will be in Jammu’s Bhalwal, Thawar Chand Gehlot in Poonch’s Balakote, Sanjay Dhotre in Rajouri’s Nowshera, Gangwar in Ramban’s Chanderkote, Faggan Singh Kulaste in Poonch and Rao Saheb Patil Danve in Rajopuri’s Manjakote.
On January 23, Rupala will be visiting Jammu’s Miran Sahib region, while Sadhvi Niranjan Jyoti will be visiting Raesi’s Bhomag. Suresh C Angadi will be in Jammu’s Bishnah and Som Prakash in Raesi’s Thakrakot.
On the same day, Kulaste will be visiting Poonch’s Mankote and Rameshwar Teli will be visiting Ramban district headquarters.
On January 24, Prahlad Joshi will visit Rajaouri’s Kotranka while Giriraj Singh will be in Udhampur’s Chenani.
This will be the second round of visit to Jammu and Kashmir by Union ministers after the abrogation of Article 370 which granted special status to the erstwhile state of Jammu and Kashmir.
Earlier this month, in one of the meetings of the Council of Ministers, a presentation was made on the development initiatives taken by the Centre following the imposition of Governor’s rule in the region.
Ahead of the visit starting Saturday, the Prime Minister on Friday held a meeting of the Council of Ministers in New Delhi, where he asked the ministers to spread the message of development during their interaction with the locals.
They were also asked to spread the message about the various central schemes which will benefit the people at the grassroots level.
He said the ministers should not restrict themselves to the urban areas but meet people in villages also to inform about the developmental work carried out by the central government in Jammu and Kashmir.
Meanwhile, the opposition Congress, which had accused the Government of “double standards” after a visit by foreign envoys to the Valley, the party has now dubbed the Central ministers’ visit as “propaganda mission”.
“Amit Shah says all is normal in Kashmir. If so, why send 36 propagandists to Kashmir? Why not allow non-propagandists to go and understand the situation prevailing there?” party leader Kapil Sibal tweeted on Thursday.
(With agency inputs)