New Delhi: Terming the revocation of Article 370 as “historic”, Minority Affairs Minister Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi said that the abrogation has opened the path of development for J&K and its people, especially the minority community.
Naqvi said, “People of Jammu & Kashmir have immense skill, which is well known the world over. After the abrogation of Article 370, the people will get an opportunity to showcase their creativity and the government will encourage them”.
He said the state was known for its wooden and brass work, handicrafts, woollen and silk items, but these could not be exploited due to terrorism. Despite having such qualities, the people remained unemployed and in poverty.
He said the government will do everything to encourage the art of J&K and the Minority Affairs Ministry through its various welfare schemes will play an important role.
He said the Article did not benefit the state and blocked its development. Now that it has been revoked, all beneficiary schemes that the rest of the country enjoys would now go directly to the people of J&K.
Taking a dig at those who objected its revocation of 370, the Minister said, “It was because of this Article that the Minority Commission Act could not be implemented in the state. There were no rights of women and the government could also not do anything for the welfare of the minority community. All these schemes will now be implemented.”
The Minister said he would be visiting J&K after August 15. The people will be educated about the welfare schemes rolled out for the minority community. The government will also help in promoting handicrafts, providing education and scholarships to the students and others.
Stressing the government’s slogan ‘sab ka Saath, Sab Ka Vikas’, the Minority Affairs Minister said that now all benefits will reach the people of Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh.
“Between 2004 to 2019, the Centre had sent Rs 2.77 lakh crore for the development of J & K. But there is no development, all the money was looted. “Satta ke thekedar (power brokers) filled their coffers and deprived the common people of their rights,” Naqvi said.
He said any law that was passed in Parliament in the presence of six members from the state would be applicable to the entire country except for J&K.
For 70 years, the people of the state were exploited by those who portrayed the temporary arrangement of Article 370 as “Constitutional compulsion”.