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Peace not possible without all stakeholders on board: JK Min

Naeem Akhtar

Jammu :  Peoples Democratic Party leader and Jammu and Kashmir Education Minister Naeem Akhtar today said that unless all the stakeholders are taken on board, peace and development was not possible in the state.

“You see no process (of dialogue) starts or ends with the push of any button. It is a continuous discourse, Mufti (Mohammed Sayeed) Sahab had said it and he has been saying it that unless we take all the stakeholders on board till then neither peace is possible nor development”, Akhtar told reporters here today.

On the questions raised by the opposition over the Rs 80,000 crore package sanctioned by the Prime Minister during his visit to Jammu and Kashmir on November 7, Akhtar said that the money would help boost the economy of the state.

“It is the job of the opposition to object to everything. The flood victims have got relief and compensation and now we will not remain in the relief and compensation mode. We will bring the state on the path of development and progress. This Rs 80,000 crore which is addition to our normal budget is being spent in the state which will give a major boost to the state economy,” he said.

The package would help generate jobs and would also help create infrastructure in the state, he added.

“How many jobs will be created, how much of infrastructure will be created. We should see it in a broader perspective,” Akhtar said.

On the result of the Bihar elections where its ally BJP suffered defeat at the hands of JDU-RJD-Congress alliance, the PDP leader said, “There will be no effect of the Bihar elections on the coalition in Jammu and Kashmir.”

He said the priorities of the Mufti Mohammed Sayeed-led government will remain the same which would be development and peace, regional balance, development of all the neglected areas of the state and to bring the crippled system on the track.

“You know how many decisions we had to take, like we stopped the backdoor appointments, we brought transparency in the recruitment process, we formed the recruitment board, Public Service Commission was made functional, Accountability Commission was made functional. Our aim is to provide basic facilities like education, health to the people of the state”, he said.

Stating that the PDP-led government was not working towards gaining newspaper headlines, he said, “we are working to change the system to provide better government of the people of the state.”

On today’s anti-coalition protest by Congress workers in Jammu city, Akhtar said, “It is democracy and everybody has right to protest, we are not involved in scams like them, they had damaged the system, 12 years by Congress and six years with National Conference (NC), we are still working to bring the state out of the mess they had created,” he said.

“They had damaged the system so much that we are still busy to come out of it,” he said hitting out at the previous regime.

On a question regarding Prime Minister Narendra Modi not mentioning separatists or Pakistan in his speech in Srinagar on November 7, the Education Minister said, “If you remember last time when Finance Minister Haseeb Drabu said that we will not go with a begging bowl to someone, reacting on which the former Chief Minister Omar Abdullah had said that he would like to beg if Mufti comes to him and he was ready to beg for the state. Now when we have got it, they have opened another front… “

He said that PDP had brought a new political dimension in the state from 1999.

When asked to comment on the statement of Prime Minister that he would take account of every single penny being spent by the state, Akhtar said that it was a good step.

“We are accountable to the people of the state, we are accountable to the system, we are accountable to all the transparency agencies, it is a very welcome thing if money comes here, we want to know what Omar Abdullah did to the package which he had brought earlier”, he said.

When asked to comment on the statement of PDP MP Tariq Hamid Karra who has been critical of the coalition with the BJP and wants the party to reconsider its ties with the saffron party, Akthar said that Karra was the one who was also in favour of joining hands with the BJP prior to the formation of the government in the state.

“When the coalition was formed our dialogue was not only going on with the BJP, we were also holding internal dialogue and consultation with all, at that time Karra was with us and in favour of the coalition and he helped the lot in that process,” he said.

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