Jammu and Kashmir Gears Up for Assembly Elections Before September, Confirms LG Manoj Sinha

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Assembly polls in J&K will be held before Sept: LG Manoj Sinha

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‘No talks with Pak till it mends its ways’

J&K will be soon free from targeted killings too

Jammu, Feb 28: Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha today said Assembly elections in Jammu and Kashmir will be held before September but clarified that conduct of polls is the domain of the Election Commission of India. He ruled out contesting upcoming Parliamentary polls from Ghazipur in Uttar Pradesh saying he is presently focused on Jammu and Kashmir.

In an interview with TV9 Network, Sinha said Lok Sabha polls are being held in Jammu and Kashmir with rest of the country and full Election Commission is visiting the UT on March 12.

To a pointed question by the TV anchor on Assembly elections, he said the Assembly polls in Jammu and Kashmir will be held before September while Statehood will be restored at an appropriate time.

However, he clarified that conduct of Assembly polls is the task of the Election Commission and whenever they take a call the Government will be ready for the elections.

Responding to a question on Ghazipur Lok Sabha seat which he won in 2014, the Lieutenant Governor said he is in constant touch with Ghazipur as this is his birthplace but important task before him at present is to work honestly in Jammu and Kashmir with the blessings of Mata Vaishno Devi Ji and Baba Amarnath Ji.

On some politicians calling for talks with Pakistan, Sinha said the policy of Government of India and Jammu and Kashmir administration is very clear that till Pakistan mends its way, there will be no talks with the neighbouring country.

“We will talk to the people of Jammu and Kashmir and youth,” he said. When asked if Pakistan doesn’t behave in future also, he added that there will be no talks till then.

Reiterating that there are no political detainees in Jammu and Kashmir, the Lieutenant Governor, however said, those who challenge unity and integrity of the country, they will continue to face music. There is complete freedom for political activities which you can see from the kind of statements and speeches being delivered by the political leaders, he added.

“We are not only targeting terrorism but entire ecosystem of terror. Some incidents (of targeted killings) took place in which we have taken action. Jammu and Kashmir will be shortly free from targeted killings also,” he said, adding he can say with full responsibility that the targeted killings were executed at the behest of Pakistan.

Referring to infiltration attempts by the terrorists, Sinha said the terrorists sometimes try to take advantage of ceasefire. “Earlier their focus was in Kashmir but later they tried in Rajouri and Poonch also. Now 360 degrees security arrangements are being made by Army, paramilitary forces and police and situation will be controlled in the border districts”.

Asserting that there has been 75 percent decline in violence, civilian and security personnel’s killings in Jammu and Kashmir, he said deployment of security forces has considerably come down in the Valley as compared to past.

“Earlier, the people used to rush to their houses in the evening in the Valley but now they enjoy night life. Stone pelting has become history. Srinagar has better markets than Delhi. A youth completed his three years degree in seven years due to hartals but his sister has now finished the degree in three years as schools and colleges are functioning properly. There are no bandh calendars issued by Pakistan but the UT Government issues festival calendars,” the Lieutenant Governor said.

He said the UT Government has received industrial development proposals worth Rs 90,000 crore and Rs 15,000 crore worth projects are on ground while the rest will also be a reality shortly.
“Jammu and Kashmir has become No. 1 in the country in eServices,” he said.

He also referred to grant of ST status to Paharis and other tribes without diluting the quota of Gujjars and Bakerwals, reservation to OBCs in jobs, educational institutions, Panchayats and Municipalities, Forest Rights Act to Gujjars and Bakerwals, Gadi, Sippi and Sinna, citizenship rights to West Pakistan refugees and many other steps taken by Narendra Modi Government for social empowerment of the people.–(Daily Excelsior)

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