Prime Minister Narendra Modi is on course to hold a public rally at Srinagar’s Sher-i-Kashmir stadium on November 7 where he will announce a massive development package for Jammu and Kashmir. The rally, on the eve of the Bihar election results, will also be attended by chief minister Mufti Mohammed Sayeed. The development package that Modi is set to announce is expected to be worth around Rs 92,000 crore.
Top government sources told Hindustan Times that Modi will visit Srinagar for a day-long trip after inaugurating the 450 MW Baglihar hydroelectric project on the Chenab in Chanderkote area of Ramban district. The commissioning of Baglihar II will increase the state’s power generation to 1,211 MW. A team of central and state officials has already reviewed the project and its security for the Prime Minister’s visit.
This is the second time Modi is visiting the Valley around Diwali as he spent his last festival of lights in Srinagar commiserating with the public over the loss of lives in the 2014 Jhelum floods.
The government remains tight-lipped about the visit for security reasons as well as to avoid any mischief engineered from across the border. The PM is, however, expected to spell out his vision for development of the Valley during his public address.
The central package is all about resurrecting the infrastructure lost in the 2014 floods with special focus on roads, bridges, power transmission line, and solar energy and tourism projects. Coming to the state after the BJP swept the Ladakh Autonomous Hill Council polls, Modi will also lay special emphasis on development of the region around Leh.
Modi’s decision to visit the state comes after a meeting with chief minister Mufti Sayeed on October 15 with focus on development of the state and eradicating terrorism aided and abetted from across the border. After initial teething problems, the Peoples Democratic Party-BJP alliance is working well with the Mufti finally activating the counter-terror grid activated as a result of which 14 terrorists have been neutralised directly as a result of the increased synergy between central agencies and state police.
Modi’s 2014 Kashmir visit