A delegation headed by Senior J&K Congress Leader and MLA Inderwal G M Saroori meet party vice-president Rahul Gandhi in a meeting at New Delhi on Wednesday.
Delegation apprised Gandhi about the party and its situation in the state. They also conveyed the difficulties they are facing and various issues pertaining to Jammu region.
Congress Leaders presented memorandum to Gandhi and said after the elimination of Congress in Kashmir valley, Jammu region remained party strong hold in spite of not getting its due. What is required that Jammu people who have faced hardship should be given special assistance for providing relief to the earthquake victims of this mountainous district (Erstwhile Doda district).
Saroori stated that due to recent earthquakes, nearly 90 percent houses of erstwhile district Doda were damaged. He demanded Rs. 4 lakhs to be sanctioned for each complete damaged house, and Rs. 2 lakhs for the partially damaged houses.
Saroori strongly advocated the construction of Singpura – Vailoo tunnel and added that the pre-feasibility reports stands submitted to the Union Minister for Roads and Surface Transport New Delhi by the Director General Border Roads Organization Chandigarh. With the construction of Singpora-Viloo tunnel, twin Districts of Doda and Kishtwar will be connected with Kashmir valley almost throughout the year besides development airports at Poonch, Rajouri and Kishtwar districts.
He also stress for incorporating provisions of 73rd and 74th Constitutional amendments in J&K and holding of early elections of Block Development Councils, District Planning and development boards and Urban Local Bodies to strengthen Panchayatiraj in J&K at an earliest beside Improvise the Prime Ministership scholar scheme and relax the rules further to make them enabling.
Delegation in their memorandum put forth various demands including early commencing of work on already decided Railway project-
- Jammu-Kalakote-Poonch and to take up Gool-Bhaderwah-Kishtwar Srinagar Rail link;
- Taking an early decision with regards to selection of candidates for Parliamentary and Assembly elections in JK;
- Organizing party convention at district, provincial and state level for ensuring greater coordination among party workers;
- Making available at gross root level publicity material on historic initiatives taken by the UPA like passing of food security and land compensation bills at early implementation thereof;
- Laying stress on most effective implementation of central sponsored schemes in J&K like PMGSY and MGNREGA;
- One time settlement of Refugees of 1947, 1965, 1971 and west Pakistanis as recommended by Congress led Cong, PDP Govt 2005-2008.
Delegation said “Because of the political instability, direct interference and insurgence caused by Pakistan, the state has been made communally vulnerable. It needs restoration of communal harmony, brotherhood and peace on top priority to ensure that the incidents like that of Kishtwar recently and Rajouri earlier so not show their ugly face again”.
The commission of inquiry is likely to bring out truth which will be accepted by the Congressmen to give a befitting reply to those who are projecting themselves on communal agenda.
Rahul Gandhi gave patient hearing to the leaders and advised to exert every effort to strengthen the congress party in J&K State and to extend the party manifesto to gross root level.
He further assured the delegation that the congress party shall not tolerate any internal or external force which may weaken the party credibility and assured all possible help.
At the end Saroori invited Vice President Congress party Rahul Gandhi for visit of Jammu region of erstwhile Doda district.
Ashok Sharma Former Legislator, Vinod Sharma General Secretary PCC, Darshan Raina President DCC Jammu and Narinder Sharma Secretary PCC were also present at the meeting with the Congress Vice President.