South Kashmir gets major focus with scheduled visit of many Ministers
UT Govt appoints GAD C/S as Coordinator for high profile visits
JAMMU, Sept 4: Civil Aviation Minister Jyotiraditya Scindia, Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises Minister Narayan Rane, Agriculture and Farmers Welfare Minister NS Tomar, Food Processing Industries Minister Pashupati Kumar Paras and Union Minister of State in the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) Dr Jitendra Singh are among top Union Ministers whose schedule was released today by the Union Ministry of Home Affairs and Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) for visiting Jammu and Kashmir from September 9 as part of Public Outreach-II expected to last around nine weeks.
“A lot of focus has been given to South Kashmir, once a hub of militancy, with many Ministers tipped to tour Anantnag, Shopian, Pulwama etc in the first list of schedule of the Union Ministers who will visit the Union Territory in September and October, which was released today,” official sources told the Excelsior.
The Ministers will interact with the people, administration and other stakeholders to listen to their grievances and address them. Later, they will submit their reports to the MHA and PMO.
Meanwhile, the Jammu and Kashmir Government has appointed Commissioner/ Secretary General Administration Department (GAD) Manoj Dwivedi as Coordinator for visit of the Ministers.
Lone Union Minister from Union Territories of Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh Dr Jitendra Singh has been coordinating the visits of Union Ministers to J&K with the Ministry of Home Affairs.
The Public Outreach-II will begin with the visit of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare Minister NS Tomar in Udhampur district on September 9 and 10. Civil Aviation Minister Jyotiraditya Scindia will tour Srinagar district on September 25 and 26. Food Processing Industries Minister Pashupati Kumar Paras is tipped to visit Baramulla on September 26 and 27 while Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises Minister Narayan Rane will be touring Samba district on September 15 and 16.
Union Minister of State with Independent Charge of Science and Technology, Earth Science and MoS in PMO, DoPT, Pension and Atomic Energy Dr Jitendra Singh is scheduled to visit Srinagar on September 18 and 19.
The Union Ministers visiting South Kashmir include Kailash Choudhary (MoS Agriculture and Rural Development Department) who will tour Shopian on September 11 and 12, Dedu Singh Chouhan (MoS Communications) who will visit Pulwama on September 14 and 15, Nisid Parmanik (Minister of State for Home) who will be in Pulwama from September 19-22, Dr Bharti Pawar (MoS Health) who has been assigned Anantnag district on September 21 and 22 and Minister of State for Home Ajay Kumar, who is scheduled to visit Shopian on September 22 and 23.
Union Minister of State for Minority Affairs John Barla will be visiting Kupwara on September 13 and 14 while Union Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs Arjun Ram Meghwal will tour Samba district on September 14 and 15.
Union Minister of State for Communications Som Prakash will be in Ganderbal district from September 15-17 while Union Minister of State for Power Krishan Pal Gurjar will tour the border district of Rajouri on September 16 and 17.
Union Ministers of State for Finance Bhagwal Krishan Rao and Pankaj Choudhary will tour Ganderbal and Jammu districts on September 20 and 21 and September 27 and 28 respectively while Union Minister of State for Commerce Anupriya Patel will be in Rajouri district on October 4 and 5. Union Minister of State for Law Prof SP Singh Vaghel will also be touring Rajouri district on October 5 and 6.
Union Minister for Social Justice Ramdas Athavale will visit Bandipora district on October 6 and 7.
Sources said schedule of some more senior Cabinet Ministers is likely to be finalized in the next few days.
As per the sources, the Ministers on their return to New Delhi after visiting different parts of the Union Territory will submit their reports to the Ministry of Home Affairs and the Prime Minister’s Office just like 2020. The MHA and PMO had then forwarded issues raised by the people and pointed out by the Union Ministers in their reports to the Jammu and Kashmir for addressing them.
“Some of the issues which pertained to the Central Ministries were addressed by the Government of India while rest were referred to the J&K Government,” sources said.
Expressing confidence that the Public Outreach Programme-II will also prove successful just like the Outreach Programme-I, they said such tours by the Ministers had also proved highly successful in the North East also resulting into redressal of public grievances to quite an extent.
In 2020, 36 Central Ministers had visited the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir from January 18-24 and toured several far off areas as well. They had submitted their recommendations to the MHA as well as PMO then and issues raised by the people were addressed by the Central and the UT Governments.
The Public Outreach-II was earlier schedule to take place in the months of July and August but was deferred because of the Monsoon session of Parliament followed by 75th Independence Day celebrations.
It may be mentioned here that during past few days, 13 Parliamentary Standing Committees (PSCs) comprising around 300 Members of Parliament (MPs) have visited the Union Territories of Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh while around half a dozen more PSCs are on way to the two Union Territories.
Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla was also on a week-long tour of Ladakh and Kashmir while a number of Ministers have also visited Leh.