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Assembly elections to precede restoration of statehood: Amit Shah

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Reaches out to youths in Kashmir with offer of friendship

Srinagar: Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Saturday sought the support of the youth of Kashmir in realising Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s “vision of a peaceful and developed” J&K, while reiterating that Assembly election will be held in the union territory after delimitation and restoration of statehood will follow.

The government will not allow anyone to create hurdles in the path of peace and development in Kashmir, Shah, who is on his first visit to Jammu and Kashmir since Article 370 was revoked in August 2019, said during an interaction with the members of youth clubs of the union territory.

Shah stated that strict action will be taken against those trying to destroy peace or obstruct the path of development.

“Terrorism has reduced, stone pelting has become invisible…I want to assure you that strict action will be taken against those who want to ruin the peace of J&K. No one can obstruct development here. It’s our commitment,” Shah was quoted as saying by news agency ANI.

“The date 5th August, 2019 (when the Parliament voted in favour of revoking of J&K’s special status under Article 370) will be written in golden letters. It was the end of terrorism, nepotism, corruption…J&K youth has to contribute in the development of the Union Territory, it is their responsibility.”

“I have come here to forge a friendship with the youth of Kashmir. Join hands with Modi-ji and the Government of India and become partners in the journey to take Kashmir forward,” he said.

The Union Home Minister said the youths of Kashmir should take advantage of the various opportunities being created by the administration for their progress.

“God has made Kashmir as heaven with its natural beauty, but Modi-ji wants to see peace, prosperity and development here as well. For that, I have come here to seek support from the youth of Kashmir.

“The administration has lent a hand of friendship, youth clubs have been created, you have been given a platform, an opportunity, so come forward and take this opportunity. Make democracy stronger here, let the youths respond to the elements who try to make people go astray,” he said.

Shah asserted the government’s commitment to bringing peace and development in Jammu and Kashmir.

“Rest assured, the developmental journey in Kashmir will not stop, and no one will stop J&K from becoming an ideal state with respect to development, peace, infrastructure and prosperity,” he added.

Shah said he has made a promise in Parliament that the statehood of J&K would be restored and it would be done after the Assembly elections.

“Elections will happen. (Politicians from Kashmir want that the) Delimitation be stopped. Why? Because it hurts their politics. Now, such things will not stop in Kashmir.

“The youth of Kashmir will get opportunities, so a right delimitation will be done, which will be followed by elections and then the status of the statehood will be restored. I have said this in the country’s Parliament and this is the roadmap,” he said.

Shah said he felt pleased after his interaction with the members of the youth clubs as the youth of Kashmir has now “set out on the right path and become a shareholder in the journey of development”.

“I wish you all the very best. Keep moving forward and take benefit from this opportunity of youth clubs and support the administration,” he said. (With PTI inputs)

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