Jubilant Kashmiris holding the National Flag and the tricolour flying high at the iconic Ghanta Ghar in the heart of Srinagar’s Lal Chowk today have disproved the statement made in 2019 by Mehbooba Mufti, former Chief Minister of the erstwhile State of Jammu & Kashmir, that if article 370 is tinkered with, there would be no one left in Kashmir to hold the tricolour in their hands.
Upbeat Kashmiris have now decided to carry forward the vision of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to make India a developed Nation by 2047. Four years after 2019, Jammu & Kashmir is decked up to celebrate the 77th Independence Day.
On August 13, hundreds of youths in Srinagar carrying tricolour in their hands busted the myth of anti-national elements that youth in Kashmir want ‘Azadi’, a dream sold out to them for many years by the terror proxies of Pakistan.
South Kashmir, once considered a hotbed of militancy, saw huge participation of people from all walks of life in a Tiranga Yatra rally under the banner of the “Meri Mati, Mera Desh” campaign.
“Today the sky of Kashmir shines with the tricolour,” L-G Manoj Sinha said on August 13 after flagging a Tiranga Yatra rally.
A new area of peace, prosperity and development ushered in Kashmir four years after the Centre revoked Article 370, which gave special rights to the people of Kashmir.
Hartals, strikes and stone pelting have become a thing of the past, and peace that remained elusive after two decades of militancy has been ushered in. Schools, colleges and Universities are functioning normally round the clock without any disturbance for the first time.
A high-profile international G20 event was held recently in Srinagar for the first time after the abrogation of article 370, signalling the dawn of a “Naya” Jammu & Kashmir.
According to Government data, over one crore tourists thronged the valley in the year 2022. Experts attribute this unprecedented surge of tourists to the peace brought about by the Centre’s decision of August 5, 2019.
BJP National Secretary Tarun Chugh, who is also party in charge for Jammu & Kashmir, said on August 13, “Jammu & Kashmir is no more the terror capital of the country. It is the tourism capital where locals are looking for progress and development”.
Hundreds of people joined the Tiranga Yatra in Srinagar, chanting “Vande Bharat” and “Bharat Mata ki Jai”. The Yatra spanned over 5 km in Srinagar city.
Since 2019, when the Centre abrogated Article 370, the Jammu & Kashmir administration has launched a crackdown on high-profile corruption cases involving top politicians, bureaucrats and prominent businessmen.
As per security establishment, there has been a significant improvement in the overall security scenario in the valley during the last 4 years. With top militant commanders killed by security forces, insurgency which was kicking and thriving over the last 30 years, has been controlled with minimal loss of civilian lives.
Thousands of Kashmiri youths have been recruited into different categories of Government jobs; Rozgar melas have been periodically held in different districts to address the issue of unemployment; youths have been imparted training under various Central schemes; today a youth in Kashmir can think of starting his own business under multiple Central schemes.
As per the Government data, the union territory has received investments worth Rs 2200 crores and generated more than 10,000 jobs in one year under its New Industrial Policy 2021. As per the data revealed by the NIP, 5,327 investment proposals worth Rs 6,600 crore were received. The last time region witnessed such a massive investment was in 1947.
Panchayat and block development council elections have witnessed remarkable participation demonstrating the growing fervour in the region.
Detractors who had been exploiting the youth of Kashmir for their own interests at the beck and call of their ISI handlers based in Pakistan have been exposed and taken to task.
IAS officer Shah Faesal said in a message on his social media account that article 370, for many Kashmiris like him is a thing of the past. “Jhelum and Ganga have merged in the Indian Ocean for the good. There is no going back. There is only marching forward.”
The decision to abrogate Article 370 has led to the complete political and economic integration of Jammu & Kashmir with the rest of the country for the first time since 1947.