Restoration of peace and normalcy should be our first and most immediate priority: Guv

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Governor N N Vohra today appealed to the public that the restoration of peace and normalcy should be our first and most immediate priority. He urged the leaders of all the mainstream political parties in the State to ensure against delay in commencing a purposeful dialogue to vigorously pursue a sustained political initiative in Jammu and Kashmir, with the support of New Delhi as has already been assured. The political leadership, he said, is facing a momentous challenge of taking every required initiative to reach out and win the hearts and minds of our youth and that this endeavour must be very strongly supported by the entire administrative machinery in the State.

Greeting the people on the auspicious occasion of country’s 70th Independence Day, the Governor observed that our liberal democratic framework allows unfettered opportunity for the pursuit of widely diverging ideologies. Side by side, our pluralistic foundations encourage and enable the resolution of all manner of differences through dialogues and discussions instead of through confrontations and violence.

The Governor observed that he was deeply saddened by the continuing disturbances in the Valley in the past several weeks which had led to several dozen young men, and even women and children, getting killed and seriously injured. He said that due to the daily incidents of stone-pelting and recurring attacks by protesting groups on the uniformed forces and their establishments it has left thousands of civilians and Security Forces personnel seriously injured.

The Governor observed that it is distressing that our enormous responsibility to look after, educate and groom our bright youth and enable them to compete and succeed in every walk of life to emerge as future leaders who would take the State to its rightful place in the country has been paralyzed due to the continuing disturbances.

The Governor said that it is most urgently necessary for the Government and the leaders of the civil society to ensure that all educational institutions reopen immediately. He observed that despite varied constraints in the recent years, our boys and girls have been doing extremely well even in the toughest all India competitive examinations. It is the bounden duty of the State to ensure that our students do not face any kind of disadvantage which may adversely affect the successful pursuit of their goals and aspirations.

The Governor observed that in the centuries past, Jammu and Kashmir has been known for its high traditions of communal harmony, secularism and pluralistic belief. He said that it should be our collective endeavour to take all required steps to revive and protect the composite identity of the State. The political leadership would also need to take varied initiatives to progressively strengthen communal harmony among the people of all the regions of the State, based on the principles of mutual respect and accommodation of each others sensitivities, concerns and beliefs.

To achieve peace, progress and prosperity, it is imperative that the leaders of all political, social, cultural and religious organizations, and all other stakeholders in Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh, urgently join hands and work most closely together to restore and preserve harmony in the State, and that they should work unitedly to see that the State achieves speedy progress and early secures its rightful place at the vanguard of the nation, the Governor said.

The Independence message of Governor included “I pay homage to our great leaders who carried out a prolonged struggle to liberate India from the colonial yoke and convey my warm greetings and good wishes to the people of Jammu and Kashmir.” He is deeply saddened by the continuing disturbances in the Valley in the past several weeks which have led to several dozen young men, and even women and children, getting killed and seriously injured. While there may be varied explanations for the continuing disturbances it is distressing that pre-occupation with the past has paralyzed our enormous responsibility to look after, educate and groom our bright youth and enable them to compete and succeed in every walk of life to emerge as future leaders who would take the State to its rightful place in the country.

For the past several years I have been repeatedly appealing that we must not allow any arising problem to adversely affect the educational schedules of our children. It is indeed most unfortunate that the recurring calls for shutdowns, day to day protests and agitations have led to the complete disruption of the educational system. It is most urgently necessary for the Government and the leaders of the civil society to ensure that all educational institutions reopen immediately. Despite varied constraints in the recent years, our boys and girls have been doing extremely well even in the toughest all India competitive examinations. The continuing disturbances have also disrupted all business, trade and economic activities, particularly affecting the livelihoods of those who earn their bread on daily basis. The functioning of the administrative apparatus and the public delivery systems have also been adversely affected and this situation is retarding the timely implementation of growth and development projects.

To achieve peace, progress and prosperity, it is imperative that the leaders of all political, social, cultural and religious organizations, and all other stakeholders in Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh, urgently join hands and work most closely together to restore and preserve harmony in the State. The very significant increase in the attempts at the cross LoC infiltration in the past year point to the unceasing attempts of our western neighbour to perpetrate terrorism and create chaos to rupture the established order in the State. It is, therefore, necessary for our Security Forces to maintain eternal vigilance on the borders.

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