Jammu, Dec 08:Underscoring the positive impact of post abrogation of article 370 on tourism and other developments in Jammu and Kashmir, Union Home Minister Amit Shah stated that the region, which witnessed around 14 lakh tourists before the current government took office, has experienced a remarkable increase with over 2 crore tourists in recent years.
In the socio-economic development, Home Minister Amit Shah provided a detailed account of the commendable growth in Gross State Domestic Product (GSDP) within Jammu and Kashmir. Over a span of five years, the GSDP surged from Rs 1 lakh crore to an impressive Rs 2,27,927 crore. This economic upswing has been accompanied by strategic investments in education and healthcare infrastructure, with the establishment of prestigious institutions such as the Indian Institutes of Technology (IIT), Indian Institutes of Management (IIM), and two All India Institutes of Medical Sciences (AIIMS). These endeavors signify a concerted effort to bolster human capital and provide quality healthcare services to the populace.
The Home Minister underscored the government's commitment to comprehensive development, emphasizing the construction of critical infrastructure. "The initiation of new road projects, railway developments, and irrigation initiatives has played a pivotal role in fostering connectivity and facilitating the movement of goods and services. This infrastructural push not only contributes to economic development but also integrates the region more closely with the rest of the country," Shah said.
In addressing historical grievances, Amit Shah highlighted the government's proactive stance in providing justice to those who were displaced from their homes due to conflict. The restitution of properties and the establishment of a legal framework to address the grievances of the displaced people reflect a commitment to redress historical injustices and facilitate the return to a semblance of normalcy.
Union Home Minister and Minister of Cooperation also highlighted significant achievements in Jammu and Kashmir's water management projects. The completion of the Ravi Canal Project, valued at Rs 62 crore, and the Tassar Chalan Teen Tal Irrigation Project, costing Rs 45 crore, are crucial milestones. The completion of Phase-III, a project amounting to Rs 399 crore, for flood management in the Jhelum and its tributaries, demonstrates the government's commitment to enhancing the region's resilience against natural disasters.
The ongoing Phase-II, with an estimated cost of Rs 1632 crore, will further augment transmission capacity from 31885 to 41000 after the completion of Phase-I. The successful realization of the Shahpur Kandi Dam project adds another feather to the cap of water resource management in the region.
“The desilting of major canals in Jammu province, a task neglected for decades, was swiftly accomplished within 59 days of the imposition of President's rule, addressing a long-standing issue after 70 years,” Shah added.
The expansion of the rail network is one of the significant development to improving connectivity. The completion of the Rs 8.45 crore Qazigund Banihal tunnel, undertaken at an estimated cost of Rs 3127 crore, is a vital infrastructure development that enhances transportation links in the region.
In rural areas, approximately 8000 kilometers of new roads have been constructed, contributing to improved accessibility and connectivity for the local population. The recognition of ten crafts from Jammu and Kashmir with Geographical Indication (GI) tags, including the Gucchi mushroom from Doda and Basmati rice from R S Pura receiving an organic certificate, highlights the rich agricultural heritage and quality produce of the region.
Moreover, the successful implementation of the Rs 5013 crore scheme for comprehensive agricultural development underscores the government's commitment to promoting sustainable and inclusive growth in the agricultural sector. These achievements collectively represent a holistic approach to infrastructure development, irrigation management, and agricultural progress in Jammu and Kashmir, thus contributing to the overall socio-economic advancement of the region.