Describing Prime Minister Narendra Modi as the man destined to make India a world power, Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed today said the PM had clear vision for the country and that his slogan of 'Sabka Saath Sabka Vikas' was of monumental significance.
"Prime Minister's slogan of 'Sabka Saath Sabka Vikas' (Together with all, Development for all) is of monumental significance. He has a clear vision for India and determined to transform it into a superpower," Sayeed said, addressing a public gathering at Sher-e-Kashmir Stadium here during Prime Minister's first rally in the Valley after PDP-BJP formed the government in the state.
The chief minister said his alliance with the BJP reflected the wishes of the people as 1.2 billion people of the country had reposed faith in the leadership of Modi.
"J&K cannot connect with the rest of the country unless people residing in the three regions (Kashmir, Jammu and Ladakh) gel together. People of Jammu gave clear mandate to BJP, just as they voted overwhelmingly in favour of PDP in the Valley," Sayeed said.
Assuring people that there would be no discrimination with any part of the state, the Chief Minister observed that a lot was written about the alliance with BJP, but he took a decision in the larger interests of the people of the state.
"The Prime Minister is a guiding force who is inclined to change the history and destiny of Jammu and Kashmir," he said.
On the alleged rising incidents of intolerance in the country, Sayeed spoke vividly on bringing down walls of hatred. He hailed the example set by the peace-loving people of the state by sticking to its pluralistic values despite extreme provocations.
"Our Legislative Assembly set a perfect example by passing a peace resolution that sent message of tolerance and inclusiveness to the rest of the country," he said.
Drawing the attention of the people towards the 2003 visit of former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee to Srinagar when he extended a hand of friendship to Pakistan from the same venue, the Chief Minister urged Modi to take a lead in engaging Islamabad in a sustained and meaningful dialogue which "will entrench lasting peace in the region".
"Vajpayee's peace initiative ensured a decade-long thaw in Indo-Pak relations. Bade bhai ko chote bhai se milna hi hoga (Big brother has to meet younger brother)," he said.
On the issue of exodus of Kashmiri Pandits, the Chief Minister said he favoured return of the community to Kashmir with dignity and respect.
"We do not favour any Israeli-type settlement of Kashmiri Pandits but their larger integration into the social milieu of Kashmir," he said.
Referring to the colossal floods of 2014 that caused widespread damage to infrastructure, besides loss of human lives, Sayeed said he was committed to provide succour to the people who lost everything to floods.
"The deluge of September 2014 was the worst in 150 years. We, at our level, tried to ameliorate the sufferings of the people, but still a lot remains to be done to provide relief to the devastated people," he said.
Appreciating the central government for its support to strengthen the core sectors of development in the state, the Chief Minister thanked the Prime Minister for fixing deadline of 2017 for four-laning of Jammu-Srinagar National Highway.
Describing unemployment as a huge challenge for the government, the Chief Minister called for making university campuses hotbeds of placements so that the pool of talented human resource find jobs in the ever-expanding market.
"We are also fast-tracking filling up of nearly 30,000 vacancies in the government sector," he said.
Favouring democratic decentralisation, Sayeed said he will strengthen the institutions of local self-government by holding elections, which ensures empowerment of people at the grassroots' level.
Meanwhile, Sayeed expressed his heart-felt gratitude to people of the state for turning out in large numbers for Prime Minister's rallies both at Srinagar and Chanderkote.
The Chief Minister in a statement said the huge influx of people at the two rallies was a reflection of the unflinching trust and confidence the people have in the coalition government in the state.
"I thank the people for turning out in massive numbers for the two public meetings, which is an indication of people's faith and their aspiration of a positive change emerging on the ground," he added.
Sayeed said the people will reap rich dividends of the developmental package of Rs 80,000 crore announced by the PM.
He hoped that it would be a turning point in the history of J&K, particularly in enhancing the employability of skilled youth.
Laying emphasis upon tapping potential for local employment generation, Sayeed said the government is focusing on skill development to enhance the employability of available talented human resource.
The Chief Minister also thanked Nitin Gadkari for providing support to develop road infrastructure, in particular fast-tracking the four-laning of Jammu-Srinagar National Highway, which will give a huge impetus to the development of the state.