NEW DELHI: Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti on Sunday said that her priority was to put Jammu and Kashmir on the path of development and vowed to leave no stone unturned in bringing back smiles on the faces of the people of the state. Mufti sought the backing of the entire India in helping tide over the difficult challenges confronting J&K.
She was speaking during the annual joint conference of chief ministers of the states and chief justices of the high courts here.
The conference was inaugurated by prime minister Narendra Modi and was also attended by chief justice of India Justice Tirath Singh Thakur among others.
Participating in the structured discussions on improving justice delivery system, Mehbooba spoke about years of political strife in J&K resulting in huge loss of life and property and setback to the development process in the state. “The government, along with other mainstream political parties, is trying to bring back J&K out of this years’ old morass to the best of its ability, which takes a great toll on its energy and resources,” she stated.
She said J&K needs special care and attention and sought the support and cooperation from all the people in the country. She said is highly sensitive and the government cannot afford to get distracted by issues which seem to trivialize its special position in the Union of India. She said her task becomes difficult when certain groups in other parts of the country try to challenge the special relationship of J&K with the rest of the country and question the same which is part of the great Constitution of India. “Such acts, besides wasting our energy, send negative signals and vitiate the peaceful atmosphere in the state,” she said, adding people in J&K are still nursing old wounds inflicted by horrific tales of misfortune and tragedy.
The Chief Minister added that this not only escalates a feeling of distrust in the state but also discredits the mainstream parties in the eyes of the voters who put their full faith in their representatives under odd circumstances.
Responding to the observations made by Mehbooba Mufti, Justice Thakur welcomed her participation in the conference after taking over as the Chief Minister of the state. “The whole country is at your back and realizes the difficult situation you are facing in your state,” he told the Chief Minister.
Justice Thakur also dwelt at length about the liberties of people and said access to courts is a fundamental right which cannot be denied to any one, howsoever frivolous his petition may be.
The Chief Minister said she has full faith in the wisdom of the country’s judicial system, which has proved time and again their sensitivities to the special needs of the state. She thanked the Chief Justice and admired various judicial interventions made from time-to-time, especially in fast-tracking clearance of insurance claims of the people devastated by the colossal floods of 2014.
Mehbooba Mufti also batted for setting up of a National Law University in J&K to impart training and advanced education to students and researchers so that quality of justice delivery system improves in the state.
J&K is one of the states which doesn’t have a National Law University yet.
Referring to the proposal sent by J&K government in this regard, Justice Thakur highlighted the need for establishing national law universities in each state to improve quality of justice delivered to the people. He, however, requested the state governments not to procrastinate over release of grants, which in any case do not exceed Rs 2 to 3 crore, as this gives rise to demand for bringing all national law universities under central regime.