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Jammu Kashmir

Posted at: Sep 13, 2017, 12:16 AM; last updated: Sep 13, 2017, 12:16 AM (IST)

Kashmir situation better but truce violations alarming, says Rajnath

‘Pakistan doesn’t appear to be keen on improving ties with India’
Kashmir situation better but truce violations alarming, says Rajnath
Home Minister Rajnath Singh along with MoS in the PMO Jitendra Singh and Deputy CM Nirmal Singh addresses mediapersons in Jammu on Tuesday. Tribune Photo: Inderjeet Singh

Dinesh Manhotra

Tribune News Service

Jammu, September 12

Winding up his four-day visit to J&K, Home Minister Rajnath Singh today observed that the situation in the state, particular in the Valley, had improved as compared to last year. He however, expressed concern over the unabated ceasefire violations on the borders and said Pakistan did not appear to be interested in improving ties with India.

“I cannot say that complete peace has been restored in the Valley but there is visible improvement in the situation as compared to the year 2016,” Rajnath said while addressing a press conference at Jammu before living for New Delhi.

“During my two-day stay in the Valley I observed an improvement in the situation,” he said. The year 2016 had witnessed unprecedented violence after the killing of militant Burhan Wani.

Rajnath, who visited the border belt of Nowshera in Rajouri district on Monday, however, was concerned aboutfrequent ceasefire violations on the Line of Control. “Eighty bunkers have already been constructed and more would be constructed in the days to come,” he said. Rajnath said with the “prevailing situation on the border, it appears that Pakistan is not interested in normalising relations with India”.

“Since 2014, ceasefire violations have become a routine affair. More than 400 ceasefire violations have taken place every year since 2014,” he said, adding that the BSF and the Army were giving a befitting reply and would soon create a situation that would force Pakistan to stop unprovoked firing.

Hailing border residents as “strategic’ assets whose spirit and nationalism makes all Indians proud, Rajnath announced that any civilian killed or injured in cross-border firing with 50 per cent or more disability would be given monetary support of Rs 5 lakh.

“Despite ceasefire violations, they continue to live near borders. Their contribution in protecting the borders of the country is immense.”

Rajnath said the Centre had decided to constitute an expert group to study problems faced by border residents. “This expert group will decide how to ensure proper utilisation of the Border Area Development Fund to accelerate developmental activities.” He also assured the people that the Centre had decided to give 3,000 jobs to migrants from the Kashmir valley for which Rs 1,080 crore had already been sanctioned to the state.

Welfare measures

  • Any civilian killed or injured in cross-border firing with 50 per cent or more disability to be given monetary support of Rs 5 lakh
  • The Union Government to constitute an expert group to study problems faced by border residents. The group will decide how to ensure proper utilisation of the Border Area Development Fund for developmental activities
  • The Central government to give 3,000 jobs to migrants from the Kashmir valley

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