Keran (Kupwara): General officer Commanding (GoC) of Srinagar-based army’s 15 Corps Lt General D P Pandey Wednesday said that situation was far better on the Line of Control and that the tourists were visiting remotest places of Kashmir.
He said this while addressing Keran Mela-2021 in Kupwara. The Mela was organised by the army at Line of Control (LoC) on the banks of the Kishanganga river. Senior army officials were also present on the occasion.
Talking to reporters on the sidelines of the Mela, Lt Gen Pandey said that the Army will continue to organize the events even whether the Line of Control (LoC) is peaceful or not. “When the LoC is peaceful it is beneficial for the people who live on the border to have a better life. So LoC must remain peaceful for them,” he said.
“There is always a design by the enemy to violate the ceasefire to enable the militants to sneak in but all such bids are foiled. The LoC is peaceful and I hope that it continues to remain so,” he added.
The Lt Gen Pandey said that Art, cultural events and music is something that the youth of the valley want for enjoyment. “They want an opportunity. It’s the responsibility of civil society to ensure and we are only enablers. We are only here for the possibilities to happen in remote places where facilities are difficult to come about”, the Corps Commander said.
About the infrastructure coming up from the other side of the border, the Corps Commander said that the infrastructure will come up from both sides for people. “When there is a ceasefire, benefits will go to either sides “, the army officer said, adding that “People have got nothing to do with the conflict. It’s a military matter when something happens. We should restrict such things to the military only.”
While appreciating the people of Keran for their cooperation with the Army, the Corps Commander said that the population of Keran is the first and frontline defence not the Army. “They are with us even during the shelling, ceasefire, and other operations and that’s how we have always been very successful due to their support”, he said. “We come for a transit movement but the local population is with the nation and they want to continue contributing towards India and it’s our responsibility to ensure they get all that is required including roads, medical help and education for girls.”
He assured that whatever “we can do will be done and anything done for them is less compared to their contribution and support.”
Talking about the border tourism in Kashmir, the GoC said that the Army has been doing it. “There have been off road events. People are visiting places like Gurez, Tangdhar, and tourists are going there who are coming from the rest of the country since there was nothing as such before”, the GoC said.
He also said that the security situation has become so good that people are going to the remotest parts of the country. “People wouldn’t visit places like Keran, Tangdhar, Gurez, and Tulail but now the tourists have started to visit these remote places even the women are traveling alone and staying in the tents”, he said while replying to a query related to the border tourism.
He said that there is a change in the atmosphere and the security situation is better and the people want tourists to come and stay. “Everybody wants a good peace and a stable situation,” the GoC said.