Reiterating that packages alone are not going to address the issues in Jammu and Kashmir, National Conference Working President and former Chief Minister Omar Abdullah said that a holistic approach is needed for creating an atmosphere wherein lasting peace shall prevail and people, especially the youth can get opportunities to grow. “I had told the then Prime Minister, Dr. Manmohan Singh in a public meeting during his visit to the state that the people of the state were not looking towards economic packages but wanted peace in the region for endings for all their sufferings,” the former Chief Minister told several delegations which called on him here during his brief visit to the winter capital. Abdullah called for multipronged approach to address various dimensions of the issues involved, saying that regaining trust of the people and instilling a sense of confidence among them is imperative to steer the state to peace, progress and development. While cautioning against the machinations of divisive forces, the National Conference Working President emphasised the need for maintaining unity and tranquility to isolate elements inimical to the state’s unique ethos. He recalled the sacrifices offered by the party during most testing and challenging times of the history and said that appreciating the imperative of pluralism and composite ethos, Sher-e-Kashmir Sheikh Mohammed Abdullah had rechristened the Muslim Conference into a National Conference. “The philosophy for which our towering leaders are known for shall always remain a guiding force for the coming generations”, he maintained while urging youth workers to come forward in a big way and play their crucial role in further strengthening the bonds of brotherhood. He said this will be a befitting reply to those believing in politics of hate and isolating them in the society. Omar lamented over the attempts being made to divide the society and exhorted upon the NC cadre to carry forward the message of brotherhood and work towards making the party more vibrant and all inclusive, which represents all religions, regions and castes of the state thereby working for the welfare of the people, particularly the downtrodden and those under the stress. The former Chief Minister said that the National Conference has never indulged in the vote bank politics and has always worked for the welfare, unity, integrity and harmonious growth of the society. He exuded confidence that single minded approach towards bringing the people of the three regions closer will steer the state to newer heights. “For this, however, we may have to contain the elements who divide the people for strengthening their vote bank,” he said adding that National Conference has always eschewed such tendencies as these are inimical to the polity. He urged the workers especially the youth to play their stellar role and get involved in the process of holistic development of the state. Addressing the SC, OBC delegation, Omar said National Conference has always fought for their rights and welfare and shall continue to do so in future as well. He said the recent issue of reservation has been taken by the party with the Governor of the state and the same shall be taken up to its logical conclusion. In his interaction with a Gujjar & Bakarwal deputation, Omar Abdullah said Gujjar and Bakarwals are part and parcel of state’s rich heritage and culture and National Conference has always stood with them and worked to ensure their economic emancipation and comprehensive development and will continue to do so in future as well.
2015 Kashmir Despatch