Committed to resettle Kashmiri Pandits in valley: PM

Committed to resettle Kashmiri Pandits in valley: PM

PTI photo

Prime Minister Narendra Modi Sunday said he is committed to resettle Kashmiri Pandits in the valley and to provide citizenship rights to PoK and West Pakistani refugees who settled in Jammu and Kashmir after migrating from across the border decades ago.

He blamed the Congress for the exodus of Kashmiri Pandits from the valley and said it would never be able to provide justice to the community and the victims of the 1984 anti-Sikh riots. 

"It is due to Congress's policies that my Kashmiri Pandit brothers and sisters had to leave their homes. The party and its allies witnessed the atrocities committed against Pandits but they paid no heed," the prime minister said.

He was addressing an election rally here in support of Union minister Jitendra Singh who is seeking re-election from Udhampur parliamentary constituency. 

Modi said that even today, the Congress is reluctant to speak on the issue of Pandits but "this chowkidar is promise-bound to resettle them on their land. This process has already been started".

Similarly, Modi said, his government has started the process of providing citizenship rights to refugees from Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK) and Pakistan who were compelled by circumstances to come here post-Independence.

"We are making continuous efforts to provide them citizenship. On May 23, when election results are announced and once again the Modi government comes to power, efforts will be restarted to pass the citizenship act," the prime minister said. 

Accusing the Congress of injustice against people of the country over 60 years, he asked whether the party would be able to give justice to the Kashmiri Pandits and the victims of 1984 Sikh riots. 

"It is the party which is parroting (demand for) justice, but it is only to deceive the people," he said alleging that "generation after generation, it deceived the people in the name of justice to achieve its political interests". 

Seeking votes for the party, Modi said the chowkidar was making sincere efforts for the people's security and prosperity, while maintaining honour and dignity. 

"Your vote in 2014 paved the way for reservation for border residents, 10 per cent quota for poor families in education and government services, besides uplifting the standard of living of poor families who got their own house, toilets, free LPG and electricity connections," he said.

The prime minister said the votes in favour of the BJP also ensured direct transfer of Rs 75 crore to the accounts of 12 crore farmer families annually and poor families got medical insurance of Rs five lakh, besides resumption of the stalled work on Shahpur Kandi dam project. 

The construction of roads, underground bunkers for border residents, tunnels and bridges, AIIMS, IIT and IIM also gained momentum in the state, he said.

"You vote on April 18 will increase the pace of development works, cause sleepless nights for some people across the border and will also strengthen Modi," he said. 

He said it was not just an election for members of Parliament, but the people would also approve a 'Naya Bharat' and 'Nayi Neeti' (new policies).

The prime minister also asked them to pledge to perform the duties of chowkidar against corruption and black money. 

He sought their support for taking tough action against anti-national elements, for a final assault on terrorism, to defeat family rule, push infiltrators out of the country, for action against deserters who looted the country and to demolish the wall of hatred.