Development in J-K only visible on social media hashtags, ads: Omar

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Kupwara: National Conference (NC) Vice President Omar Abdullah on Monday said that the much debated development is only visible on social Media hashtag and sponsored news.

He said this while addressing a huge workers convention here at TRC ground in North Kashmir Kupwara district.

Addressing the convention, Omar, as per a statement issued to the news agency—Kashmir News Observer (KNO) said, “Our state was split, our Constitution discarded, our Legislative Council was abolished. The J-K cadre of All India Services officers was disbanded and merged with the AGMUT cadre. All this was done citing that Article 370 is the root cause of all evils plaguing the state. The constitutional guarantees were eroded and it’s abrogation was made a perfect pretext for rescinding our constitutional status. All we are asking is that where is the much touted change? A new dawn is arising, we were told. Where is it? Where is that era of development, investment, job extravaganza and inclusion that we were promised, beckons us? It was said that whenever accountability was sought local politicians took shelter behind Article 370.”

Adding that people in J-K are in trouble and desperate for good governance he said, “Bureaucracy is out of touch with people. Civil administration has taken a direct hit as a consequence of a new undemocratic project that is in place in Jammu and Kashmir. A change in the composition of the civil services after disbanding J-K cadre has only deepened the administrative inertia in the region. The parachuted bureaucrats are at loss to understand the issues of the local populace. The incumbent unrelated administration has also failed to forge informal relationships with the people.”

On the administration’s much flaunted ‘Naya Kashmir’ he said, “The touted change is not visible on ground in J-K. The entire region continues to remain on edge. Ever increasing gap between administration and people is the only discernible change on ground. Bureaucracy, on the other hand, is busy changing stripes amongst themselves leaving people to fend for themselves,” he added.

He also stated that the government has also lost sight of the predicaments suffered by the elected Panchs, Sarpanchs, and DDCs. “Airdropped bureaucracy is treating these elected representatives as having no value. There is growing anxiety among such grass root level elected representatives across Jammu and Kashmir. There is a groundswell of anger and despair found in such representatives. Most of them have been confined to hotel rooms,” he said.

Taking a dig at certain quarters, Omar said that NC was a constituent unit of NDA headed by late Vajpayee, the same person who extended hand of friendship towards Pakistan at Srinagar.

“There is no denying it. I was a minister in NDA led by Vajpayee who opened trade and bus service with Pakistan. I worked with a PM, who started the Lahore bus service. I worked with a PM, who sought to approach the issues playing Jammu and Kashmir within the framework of Insaniyat, Kashmiriyat, and Jamhooriyat. This cannot be said for those who are pointing fingers at us.”

“There is no comparison between the then NDA led by late Vajpayee and the present BJP. Vajpayee was the first to weave the twin threads of India-Pakistan relations and Kashmir outreach into a single tapestry. He continued holding an olive branch on the reef of thorns. In him Kashmir had a pair of ears that heard their tribulations, predicaments; ears that heard voices of reason and was aware of the historicity of Kashmir’s unique identity. Can this be said for the present BJP? Is there any comparison? I don’t think so,” he said—(KNO)

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