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PDP committed to its political agenda on Kashmir: Altaf Bukhari

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‘More trade and travel will strengthen bonding across the borders’


SRINAGAR, March 18: Senior PDP leader and Minister for Finance, Education, Labour & Employment Syed Mohammad Altaf Bukhari on Sunday said that PDP is committed to its agenda of socio-economic and political resolution of Kashmir issue.

Addressing a party convention in Batmaloo constituency, Bukhari observed that PDP forged an alliance with Bharatiya Janta Party (BJP) despite ideological dissimilarities only to find a way out to address political and economic aspirations of people of the State.

He said that PDP founder Mufti Mohammad Sayeed was of this conviction that only an empowered Prime Minister can be in a position to take a call on the festering Kashmir issue and that belief formed the basis of the present coalition government in the State.

The Finance Minister observed that PDP is striving hard for strengthening of trade and travel across the LoC so that the people on both sides of the divide feel empowered. He said that PDP turned the dream of Srinagar-Muzaffarabad trade and travel into a reality and the same way, it envisages to facilitate, reopening of other routes for a better connectivity and communication between the people across the borders.

“Our party strongly favours opening of more routes between the two sides and providing banking facilities for the cross-LoC trade through existing routes, off-course with foolproof security system in place,” Bukhari remarked.

He said that PDP workers should strengthen the party’s interests at grass root level by disseminating Party’s agenda and the work done during its tenure since 2002.

Regarding the educational infrastructure in Jammu and Kashmir, Bukhari said that a lot of improvement is needed to improvise this sector. “I can’t promise you moon but I am of firm belief that the way our government has tried to garner attention of lawmakers  towards this important sector, things would change drastically in near future,” he added.

Bukhari said that his top priorities, as new finance minister include augmentation of health and education infrastructure in the State.

Speaking on the occasion, Peerzada Mansoor Hussain, PDP General Secretary central Kashmir said that said Kashmir has suffered too much for too long to be “turned into a slanging match for political gains”.

Addressing party workers convention Mansoor said that instead of indulging in competitive political rhetoric, PDP believes in addressing the basic issues of public welfare on the ground.

The PDP General Secretary said that National Conference since its inception has betrayed the political and economic aspirations and interests of the people of Jammu and Kashmir. “The history of National Conference bears testimony to this fact that its formation and subsequent stints in power were ensured only in lieu of its brazen compromises on aspirations of people of Kashmir,” he remarked.

He said the PDP leadership is abreast with the livelihood concerns of the party workers and very soon they will find their concerns addressed.

“We have seen immense death and destruction over the past more than two decades and it is now time to put a healing balm on the deep wounds of the people and bring happiness in their lives,” he said and added that PDP is working on the fulfillment of its socio economic and political agenda that will bring a visible change on the ground.

In his address, Noor Mohammad Shiekh, MLA Batmaloo thanked his electorate for reposing trust in him and furthering the agenda of PDP on ground. “My appeal to the minister for finance would only be to be liberal in funding the developmental programmes in progress in Batmaloo constituency,” he said.

Besides MLA Batmaloo, the convention was addressed by Mohammad Khurshid Alam, party district president Srinagar and MLC, party senior leader Nazir Ahmad Khan and Abdul Hamid Kosheeen.

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