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National News
Shah lays roadmap for statehood for Kashmir, reviews security in backof civilian killings
Srinagar, Delimitation would be carried out in Jammu and Kashmir, followed by elections and eventually restoration of statehood, Union Home Minister Amit Shah said on Saturday, as he visited the Valley for the first time since the abrogation of article 370 on August 5, 2019 and also reviewed the security situation in wake of targeted killings.

Singh, who reached Srinagar today on a three-day visit, reviewed the security situation in Jammu and Kashmir in a meeting with top officials. The recent targeted killings of minorities and migrant workers was among the topics discussed, said sources.

Soon after landing, Shah met the families of security personnel who were killed while fighting terrorists, and later in the day inaugurated a direct international flight service between Srinagar and Sharjah in the United Arab Emirates.

The security review meeting which was held at the Raj Bhawan lasted for nearly five hours. The meeting was attended by the top brass of the country’s security apparatus including the Intelligence Chief, BSF chief, CRPF Director-General, J&K police chief and other senior officials.

Sources said security forces and intelligence agencies were asked by the Union Minister to give a final push to end the militancy. A detailed briefing was also given to the Minister about the recent killings, radicalisation, recruitment, infiltration and anti-militancy operations.

Later, the Minister interacted with members of Youth Clubs, a program started by J&K Governor Manoj Sinha which was lauded by Shah. According to government, there are around 45,000 youth who are members of the Clubs.

Shah, while interacting with the members, urged them to help in last mile delivery of government schemes.

Giving out the roadmap for Jammu and Kashmir, Shah said, "...delimitation would happen, after delimitation elections would happen, and after that statehood status would also be given, I have said so in parliament."

He said terrorism has reduced, and called upon the youth to partner in the development process, and in ensuring peace in J&K.

"Terrorism has reduced, stone pelting has become invisible and I want to assure you that strict action will be taken against those who want to disturb peace in Jammu and Kashmir. No one can obstruct development here. It's our commitment," he said.

He added that Prime Minister Narendra Modi has taken democracy to the grassroots-level and after many years, democracy has been established in Jammu and Kashmir.

"What did 70 years of Jamhooriyat give, 87 MLAs, six MPs and three families, but Shri Modi has given 30 thousand elected representatives in such a short time," Shah said.

"Those who are making a noise are doing so because 'Jamhooriyat' (Democracy) has come out of the custody of three families and it now belongs to the poor."

The Home Minister said with the introduction of a three-tier Panchayat system, the youth of Jammu and Kashmir now has the opportunity to become Panch, Sarpanch, District Panchayat member, MLA and Chief Minister of Jammu and Kashmir and also go to Parliament.

"Earlier, this opportunity was limited to a few families but Narendra Modi has made a new beginning and youth should join this process," he said.

Appealing to the youth to join the process of development, the Minister said, "Youth should always remember, life is full of possibilities, it depends on you how you utilise these opportunities. Do you want to sit and cry, be negative, or do you want to move ahead with a positive mindset."

Shah also said: "I am here to make friends with the youth."

The Home Minister said a curfew imposed by Union Government after article 370 was put in abeyance was put in place for peace in the Valley, and if people faced difficulties, it was for the long term good.

Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha, Minister of State in PMO Dr. Jitendra Singh, and Director General of Police Dilbag Singh were also accompanying Shah.

Security was beefed up across Kashmir ahead of Shah’s visit. In Srinagar, a security blanket has been thrown across the city to ensure that the visit of the minister passes off peacefully.

Soon after he landed in Srinagar, Shah visited the family of Jammu and Kashmir Police inspector Parvez Ahmad who was shot dead by militants in June this year.

Shah is on a three-day visit to J&K, which comes in the backdrop of a number of civilians being killed in Kashmir by terrorists.

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