Army commander reaches out to locals in south Kashmir

Army commander reaches out to locals in south Kashmir

During the interaction with a select group of community leaders organised on Friday, the army commander sought suggestions from the people to ensure a bright future for the youth of the valley. PTI file photo

Northern Army commander Lt Gen Ranbir Singh has reached out to the locals in south Kashmir, considered to be the hotbed of militancy, with a message that the army and the government are working towards restoring peace and ensuring the overall development of the region.

During the interaction with a select group of community leaders organised on Friday, the army commander sought suggestions from the people to ensure a bright future for the youth of the valley.

The meeting comes at a time when normal life across Kashmir continues to remain disrupted since the scrapping of the special status to Jammu and Kashmir and its bifurcation into two Union Territories -- Jammu and Kashmir, and Ladakh -- on August 5.

A short video clip of the interaction was shared on Saturday by Udhampur-based defence PRO Lt Col Abhinav Navneet.

"Wherever we go, we try to convey this message to all and I want to request you to carry this message forward that we want peace and development of this region. We want the boys and girls to get better education and good jobs... we want a bright future for them," Lt Gen Singh was heard telling the community leaders.

"We are working in this direction and so is the government. If you have any suggestions, we are ready to act upon those suggestions," the commander said.

The army has launched a massive mission reach out initiative in Jammu region post revocation of the provisions of Article 370 to assist the local administration in maintaining peace, harmony and conducive environment.

Though no untoward incident was reported from any part of Jammu region where normal life remained peaceful with people continuing with day-to-day activities, the army is meeting opinion-makers and reaching out to the populace to mitigate their sufferings by organising free medical camps, Jammu-based Army PRO Lt Col Devender Anand said.

He said numerous initiatives have been undertaken by the Army over the past 48 days under 'Mission Reach Out', especially in Chenab valley and the Pir Panjal regions.

"The interaction was aimed at ensuring peace and tranquility in the region and spreading awareness amongst the locals about the role of the army in nation-building and welfare activities being undertaken by the Army and State and Central Government," he said.

Lt Col Anand said the army is encouraging elders, religious heads, youngsters and opinion makers to address apprehensions of people and help in maintaining calm and peace as well as the creation of an environment that is conducive for overall development.

He said the village authorities appreciated and lauded the support provided by the army in all spheres.

The opinion-makers are of the view that such meetings not only enhance the bond between the army and the people but also boost the morale of the locals which in turn assist in maintaining peace and harmony in the region.

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