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Jammu Kashmir

Posted at: May 26, 2018, 12:11 AM; last updated: May 26, 2018, 12:11 AM (IST)

CM reaches out to border residents

Visits migrant camps in Jammu, Samba; promises govt jobs to kin of shelling victims
CM reaches out to border residents
Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti interacts with border residents at a migrant camp on Friday. Tribune photo

Tribune News Service

Jammu, May 25

Amid brewing anger against the Centre and the state government for “indifference” towards the plight of shelling-hit border residents, Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti on Friday announced a slew of measures for welfare of the people living along the 198-km International Border in the Jammu region.

Mehbooba, who flew in from Srinagar on Friday morning, visited the people staying at various relief camps in Jammu and Samba districts, to assess the difficulties being faced by them.

In Jammu, Mehbooba visited the local ITI, Chakroi Farm and Satarian relief camps in the RS Pura area while she interacted with people at the Thandi Khui and Chichi Mata Mandir camps in Samba district.

In her first major announcement, the Chief Minister said the next of kin of each family, which has lost a family member in the shelling, would be given a government job. She said the government would also examine the demand of raising a battalion of the J&K Police comprising youth exclusively from the border areas.

She also assured that her government would look into the demand of bringing people living in areas along the International Border at par with those staying near Line of Control in terms of facilities or any incentives. Mehbooba said she would take up the matter with the Union Ministry of Home Affairs. Besides, the Chief Minister announced that steps would be taken to construct ‘border bhawans’ in urban areas where people from border areas could stay during difficult times. “We will also make efforts to ensure education facilities at these places,” she said.

The Chief Minister also gave Rs 1 lakh each to the kin of those killed in the cross-border shelling. The amount was in addition to the ex gratia extended to them by the Jammu divisional administration already.

Pertinently, at least 11 persons, including two BSF personnel and nine civilians, were killed and 60 others injured during the nine-day Pakistani shelling that stopped on Wednesday night. Around 90,000 people have migrated to safer places.

Interacting with people, Mehbooba said she was “deeply distressed and anguished” due to the border flare-up and sought an immediate end to it to save more loss of life and property.

She appealed to the leadership of Pakistan to respect the sentiment of Ramzan and respond positively to the ceasefire announced by the Centre recently. Mehbooba said the Centre’s step had brought relief to people of the state and now the need was to extend this gesture to the border.

Earlier, border residents apprised her of their problems and sought suitable compensation for the losses suffered by them. Mehbooba was accompanied by her Cabinet colleagues Javed Mustafa Mir, Sham Choudhary and Devinder Manyal during her visit to the relief camps.

Bhawans, battalion, and more  

  • The government mulls constructing ‘border bhawans’ in urban areas for the stay of residents from border areas during shelling.
  • Mehbooba said the government planned to raise a battalion of the J&K Police comprising border youth only
  • The government to examine the demand for treating residents living along the International Border at par with those staying near the Line of Control 

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