Centre releases ₹ 19,000 cr from Jammu & Kashmir package

RSTV Bureau

Youth throw stones on Security forces during clashes in Srinagar on Sunday.

On Thursday, the Centre released ₹ 19,000 crore for Jammu and Kashmir, from the ₹ 80,000 crore development package announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in 2015.

The new package was announced at a high-level inter-ministerial meeting chaired by Home Minister Rajnath Singh in Delhi on Thursday, Home Ministry officials revealed.

Singh reviewed the progress in implementation of the mega package and works of various development initiatives announced for Jammu and Kashmir.

It was conveyed in the meeting that 25 per cent of funds from the total package, around ₹ 19,000 crore, has been released so far and related works were going on, an official said.

The meeting was attended by representatives from various central ministries and departments, and the state government.

The successful implementation of the mega package is key to assuage the feeling of alienation in Jammu and Kashmir, the officials said.

Jammu and Kashmir had witnessed violence during the April 9 bypoll to the Srinagar Lok Sabha seats in which eight died. More than 200 incidents of violence were reported.

Continuous protests by students have been on in the Valley since then against alleged police excesses.

Interestingly, the monetary package has been released just two days after Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti met PM Modi in the capital. The two leaders are said to have spoken about the rising student protests in the Valley and the chief minister is said to have pushed for dialogue with all stakeholders to control the protests.

The ₹ 80,000-crore package for Jammu and Kashmir was announced by the prime minister in November, 2015. So far, ₹ 17,000 crore has been released to the state government by the Centre.

Around ₹ 40,000 crore out of the ₹ 80,000-crore package have been earmarked for improving road infrastructure including upgradation of important highways. ₹ 7,854 crore has been earmarked for flood relief, reconstruction and flood management and a total of ₹ 2,241 crore is meant for promoting tourism. In addition to all this, ₹ 11,708 crore is held for power, new and renewable energy. And ₹ 4,900 crore has been earmarked for improving healthcare facilities in the state.

(With inputs from PTI)