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Jammu Kashmir

Posted at: Nov 12, 2017, 1:05 AM; last updated: Nov 12, 2017, 1:08 AM (IST)

MHA panel promises ‘visible changes’ to border residents in coming days

Lists demands raised by people, to submit report to New Delhi for suitable solution
MHA panel promises ‘visible changes’ to border residents in coming days
Rina Mitra, Special Secretary in the Union Home Ministry, visits villages along the LoC in Rajouri district on Saturday. Tribune Photo
Arteev Sharma & Shyam Sood

Tribune News Service

Jammu/Rajouri, November 11

The high-level team of the Union Ministry for Home Affairs (MHA) said today that the border dwellers living along the International Border (IB) and the Line of Control (LoC) would see “visible changes” in coming days. It said the Centre and the state government were collectively planning to solve problems being faced by them in the wake of recurrent ceasefire violations by Pakistan.

“We have listed the genuine demands and issues raised by border people. We will submit a comprehensive report to the Centre for finding a suitable solution to the issues. We will again visit the state and work in close association with the state government to bring changes on the ground,” said Rina Mitra, Special Secretary, MHA, who is heading the study panel, while interacting with border residents in the Nowshera area of Rajouri district.

She said the Centre and the state government would, in particular, focus on children and the loss they suffered in terms of education due to shelling and firing by Pakistan.

The team, constituted by Home Minister Rajnath Singh, onFriday visited villages along the IB in Jammu, Samba and Kathua districts. It assessed quantum of damage, problems being faced by people, their demands and issues for a broad-based redressal planning.

During the visit, Rajouri Deputy Commissioner Shahid Iqbal Choudhary, other senior officials of the district administration and police accompanied the panel and briefed the members about the losses due to ceasefire violation, evacuation, rescue measures and rehabilitation.

The panel assessed losses in various villages and held a detailed interaction with public at Jhangar village, which is worst affected.

“As intermittent firing continues near the LoC, the team members interacted with border dwellers at Government Middle School in Jhangar, which suffered a heavy damage due to mortar shelling in May,” said Purshotam Kumar, former sarpanch, Jhangar.

Kumar said, “For the last seven months, people have been staying in relief camps and their children are deprived of education. They can’t even celebrate major festivals, including Diwali and Eid.”

Later, the team inspected the recently constructed bunkers at Langar and Dnaka villages. It also inspected two damaged schools, from where students were evacuated in July. The major demands put forward by the border dwellers included cash relief on the pattern of Kashmiri migrants, waiving of all sorts of loans, compensation for losses and plots at safer places.

Focus on children

  • The team said the Centre and the state government were collectively planning to solve problems being faced by them in the wake of recurrent ceasefire violation by Pakistan
  • The main focus would the border children and the loss they suffered in terms of education due to shelling and firing by Pakistan
  • Team members assessed quantum of damage, problems being faced by people, their demands and issues for a broad-based redressal planning

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