Continuing the streak of his public outreach meetings, Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha today met several delegations of Former Ministers, ex-Legislators, delegation of All India Confederation of SC/ST/OBC organisation and a delegation of J&K Pahari Cultural and Welfare Forum here at the Raj Bhavan today.

Former Ministers- Sukhnandan Choudhary and Ch. Lal Singh; former MLCs- Vikram Randhawa, Surinder Choudhary and Surinder Ambardar; besides former MLA Balwant Singh Mankotia met the Lt Governor and projected various issues of public importance.

Delegations of Chamber of Traders Federation, various Ulemas of J&K and a delegation led by former administrator Auqaf-e-Islamia, Doda Asif Jahan Gatoo also met with the Lt Governor.

Former MLC, Vikram Randhawa raised issues related to disengagement of Self Help Groups, regularization of Rehbar-e-Khel and NIS employees etc.

Another former MLC, Surinder Choudhary projected issues of Naushera and Sunderbani area pertaining to the construction of individual border bunkers to safeguard lives of the people from cross border shelling; expediting the work on Government Degree College and strengthening Power and R&B sector. He also drew Lt Governor’s attention towards the substandard quality of bunkers constructed in the area, on which the Lt Governor assured him to take the necessary action in this regard. The Lt Governor said that the quality of works cannot be compromised at any cost.

Former Minister, Sukhnandan Choudhary put forth various issues pertaining to the welfare of farmers’ community and employment generation for the youth.

Former MLC Surinder Ambardar submitted issues related to Kashmiri Pandits, including encroachment of their ancestral lands in Kashmir and their employment under Prime Minister’s package.

Ch. Lal Singh discussed the issue of ban on mining activities, disbanding of Self Help Groups of Engineers, protection of heritage of Jammu and installation of a statue of Maharaja Gulab Singh among others.

The Lt Governor, while interacting with the former Ministers and former Legislators, observed that the present Government is committed towards inclusive development and the welfare of the people of J&K.

We are focussing on 5 principles viz transparency in governance, empowering grassroots democracy, people’s welfare, accelerated development and creation of employment opportunities, to bring the new era of normalcy and development in J&K.

A robust mechanism is being rolled out for the effective delivery of public services with special focus on improving service delivery mechanism and timely disposal of public grievances, the Lt Governor maintained.

He further asked them to play a vital role by highlighting the developmental needs and issues of the people and urged them to continue working towards empowering the common masses.

Meanwhile, a delegation of All India Confederation of SC/ST/OBC Organizations, JK led by Sh. RK Kalsotra submitted a memorandum of demands pertaining to welfare of the people of the SC, ST and OBC communities including implementation of reservation in promotions, adequate representation of SC/ST/OBCs in Constitutional bodies, Commissions, Boards and Judiciary; construction of Dr. BR Ambedkar Bhawan, issuance of OBC Certificate instead of current OSC Certificate being issued to the OBC Category people.

The Lt Governor gave a patient hearing and observed that the Government is making dedicated efforts at all levels for the welfare of all the sections of the society for the holistic development of the UT, besides safeguarding the rights of the people of J&K.

He assured the delegation to review all their genuine issues and demands so that effective measures could be taken for their welfare in the right earnest.

The delegation led by Sh. Kuldeep Raj Gupta, former Vice Chairman, J&K Advisory Board for Development of Pahari speaking people apprised the Lt Governor about various issues regarding welfare of the Pahari speaking people and also projected a demand for the grant of Scheduled Tribe status to Paharis of Jammu and Kashmir.

The Lt Governor observed that the UT Government is working with an agenda of equitable and balanced development for the upliftment of all the sections of the society and assured the members of the delegation that all the genuine issues projected by them would be examined and resolved in a time-bound manner on merit.

The delegation of Chambers of Traders Federation led by Neeraj Anand submitted a list of issues faced by traders and retailers lately. He also informed the Lt Governor about the preventive measures laid by the government against coronavirus being observed by the traders. Neeraj Anand also thanked for administration for timely relaxation in lockdown measures.

The Lt Governor assured the traders about the government’s efforts towards rejuvenation of trade activities in face of the Covid crisis.

Former Administrator, Auqaf-e-Islamia Doda, Asif Jahan Gatoo met with the Lt Governor and demanded that special attention be paid to prevent encroachment of Waqf properties. He also reassured the Lt Governor about helping maintain communal harmony in the region.

The delegation of various Ulemas of Jammu & Kashmir submitted a host of demands including formation of Madrasa Board in the UT, strengthening of Waqf Board in the UT, protection to Waqf property in J&K and provision of honourarium to Maulavis of mosques. They also informed the Lt Governor about preventive measures and public interest activities being organized by their respective mosques.

The Lt Governor thoroughly noted all their issues and assured time bound redressal of genuine demands based on merit. He also acknowledged the role played by the religious leaders in generating awareness regarding ongoing coronavirus pandemic among the masses.