Will Jammu factotum political clan muster the guts to say no to ‘His (Kashmiri) Master’s Voice and evolve leadership qualities to lead, and not to play the humiliating role of second fiddle?
Prof (Dr).Vivak M. Arya General Secretary, SKUAST Jammu Teaching Association: “Yes, the question is very valid because if we are living in a democratic setup why can’t we have a Hindu Chief Minister. Unfortunately, the Valley-based parties never tried to give genuine and due representation to the Jammu region. I personally feel that the Jammu region was neglected deliberately so that the voice of justice can be crushed. The important question again is why there was discrimination in number of assembly seats in Jammu as against Kashmir. It has happened only because the Valley-based parties always tried to create their hegemony over the Jammu region which is against natural justice. Hindu should become CM as we are living in a democratic republic country. Having said that, I want to emphasize that the person for the top executive slot should be of high calibre with impeccable integrity and honesty. He should have a clear road map for the Union Territory, a clear vision for the youth of J&K who are feeling dejected and disenchanted because of unemployment, visions for the education sector, industry, agriculture, and tourism. Only sloganeering will not work. See the condition of the health sector, we are lacking behind even to the poorest state in the country. But fortunately, we have some Hindu leaders in parties which can fulfil this criterion. So I don’t feel anything wrong if Jammu and Kashmir has an honest, forward-looking and dynamic Hindu as a Chief Minister.
Dr Hari Om: “In 2014, people of Jammu province voted overwhelmingly for J&K BJP hoping it would respect its solemn pledge and work for the installation of a Hindu from Jammu as J&K Chief Minister. Sadly, it went back on its pledge and hobnobbed with the PDP against whose ideology it had fought.No wonder, people of Jammu province are chafing and J&K BJP at the receiving end. Demand in Jammu for a Hindu CM is as democratic and secular as it is rational and genuine. It’s the fundamental duty of all parties to appreciate this demand in the larger interest of the Union Territory, make-Hindu-J&K-CM as their chief plank and contest elections on this issue as and when held. It would be the responsibility of the electorate to vote for a party which, they think, could ensure installation of a Hindu as J&K CM. Again, it would be the responsibility of the concerned party to elect a public-spirited Hindu with an impeccable record as Leader of the Legislature Party. The installation of a Hindu as CM would help bridge the gulf between Jammu province and Kashmir. All would appreciate Kashmiri leadership, which led J&K for over seven decades, if it also takes the plunge to support the demand in Jammu for a Hindu CM.
Rajesh Gupta, President National Democratic Party: “The chances of elections to be held in Jammu and Kashmir are very bleak in the near future. But whenever they will be held, the former minister Altaf Bukhari, who recently launched J&K Apni Party, may most probably be the most credible face for the post of Chief Minister. Bukhari has acceptance in both the regions of Jammu and Kashmir.Moreover, in a short span of time many people have joined the Apni Party by resigning from Congress, BJP, National Conference, PDP etc. People, especially youth have rejected these parties because they were disillusioned with their functioning. Altaf Bukhari will be the best candidate to lead the affairs of Union Territory in future as Chief Minister.
Former MLA Gandhi Nagar Ch Piara Singh: “I strongly vouch for a a Chief Minister from Jammu and that too a Hindu only.Enough is enough. Discrimination in the number of assembly seats was with an ovowed and sinister objective of having always a Muslim Chief Minister. 46 seats to Kashmir and 37 to Jammu was blunder done by Kashmiri rulers.We the people of Jammu have always suffered discrimination and this time we want a Hindu CM. Jammu people must begin a movement to work unitedly to achieve this target.
President Jammu Central Mahajan Sabha Romesh Chander Gupta: “I will be delighted to have the next CM from the BJP and a Hindu. But at the same time I am of the view that our CM should be a man of vision, which can carry forward the Union Territory to the next level in terms of progress, development and equal opportunity in jobs to all. From the present set up, I am not able to choose any name of that calibre. Our youth need jobs, our industrialists want industry and businessmen want roaring business. Our CM should be a man who can work for all of us. Moreover, he must be a visionary person who can work to upgrade Jammu based places of pilgrimage so that more pilgrim tourists visit this place.”
Rajiv Chuni, Chairman SoS International: “Jammu and Kashmir is different when compared with the rest of the country. Previous governments in erstwhile State always remained Kashmir centric and they never focused on the Jammu region. People thought that the Centre has taken such a giant exercise and Article 370 and 35A were abrogated and there is no separate Constitution of J&K now. There should be a credible face, liked by the people from both Jammu and Kashmir divisions. The future Chief Minister should be strict who will focus on ‘law and order’ on ground and treat both the regions equally. At present, there is no credible face and many people in discussions have political affiliations and they have already served in previous governments. There should be a new face this time.”
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