Surgical strikes showed the world a new India: PM Modi
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday inaugurated and laid foundations of a number of development projects in militancy-hit Jammu and Kashmir.
“Today the whole country is angry to see the killings of innocent Kashmiri sons and daughters. These youth want peace and want to live; they are being made target of terrorism. This is the truth of terrorism here. I want to assure you, the youth of J&K and the whole country, that this terror will be fought with full force. Every terrorist will be given a fitting reply,” Modi said addressing a gathering in Srinagar.
The PM landed in Srinagar amid a shutdown, called by separatist leaders Syed Ali Geelani, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq and Yasin Malik who were either detained by police or put under house arrest. Roads were deserted and markets closed. Mobile internet services were suspended while the road from Dalgate to SKICC was out of bounds for people.
Modi invoked the sacrifices of state’s army jawans like Nazir Ahmad Wani and M Aurangzeb.
“J&K’s heroes are youth like Shaheed Nazir Ahmad Wani, Shaheed M Aurangzeb and Tajamul Hussain who have been committed for peace and good future of the country. Hero is the one who lives to fulfil dreams. He is the biggest coward who kills others’ dreams,” he said.
Modi said India had already indicated its intent by doing “surgical strikes”. “By surgical strikes, we have shown to whole world what will be new policy and culture in India. We will break backbone of terrorism in Kashmir as well. The development of J&K and its people is our priority. And will remain ever...,” he said.
The PM, however, assured “Sab Ka Saath, Sab Ka Vikas” [development for all]. “I assure you that the dream of [former PM] Atal Bihari Vajpayee; the work which he has given us in legacy, we won’t back off from that.” Vajpayee’s slogan of “Insaniyat, Kashmiriyat, Jamhooriyat” to resolve the Kashmir dispute in 2003 made him a household name in Kashmir.
On a tour of all the three regions of the state — Jammu, Ladakh and Kashmir Valley, Modi inaugurated digitally ~7,500 crore projects, including J&K’s first rural BPO at Bandipora, multipurpose indoor sports facility in Ganderbal, 400 KV Jalandar-Samba-Shopian-Amargarh power transmission line and many educational projects under RUSA. He also laid foundations of ~1,828 crore All India Institute of Medical Sciences Awantipora and 600-flat transit accommodation for Kashmiri migrant employees in Ganderbal and Bandipora.
Modi first arrived in Leh where he laid foundation of some ~3000 crore projects, including the region’s first university, the University of Ladakh, which will use the resources and infrastructure of degree colleges of Nubra, Leh, Zanskar and Kargil. “The work on two projects is already going on which will connect Leh-Ladakh by railway line and air. This region for the first time will connect with rail map and Kushok Bakula Rimpochee (KBR) Airport’s new terminal building will speed up development here.”
In Srinagar, Modi pitched for the return of migrant Kashmiri Pandits. “India’s spirit is to help each other when in distress and this is the Kashmir’s sentiment as well. And the same Kashmiriyat demands that those Kashmiri Pandit brothers and sisters who in times of violence had to leave their homes and hearths; they should be settled here with respect,” he said.
Reacting to Modi’s visit, J&K Pradesh Congress Committee president Ghulam Ahmed Mir said, “He [Modi] had come in the last innings as Prime Minister. There was nothing new in his announcements because projects either inaugurated or laid foundation stones, were started by UPA government.”