Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed wants no change in the special status accorded to the state. On Monday he asked the Central government to continue to treat the state of Jammu and Kashmir as a special category state under Centrally-Sponsored Schemes (CSSs). Mufti’s PDP is in a ruling coalition with the BJP, which is leading the NDA government at the Centre.
“With NITI Ayog revising funding norms under Central Schemes, I will continue to insist upon 90:10 dispensation with Central Government for overcoming huge locational disadvantage, coupled with difficult security scenario that the State has countenanced over the past 25 years,” Sayeed said at a function in central Kashmir Budgam district.
The Chief Minister was speaking after inaugurating a three-day Public Information Campaign (PIC), organised by the PIB. The campaign has been stressing on generating awareness about the Centrally-Sponsored Schemes.
While speaking at the gathering, Mufti Sayeed also directed the administrative machinery to ensure that benefits of all social sector schemes reaches to every possible person at the grassroots level.
He also urged the Central government to forge a better match between schemes and needs of the states, especially the funding to the J&K and North East states as per the present norms.
“We cannot ignore the role of Central Schemes like PMGSY and NRHM in ushering in an era of rapid development of the State, in particular its remote and far-flung areas,” he said.
The Jammu and Kashmir CM also used the occasion to count the achievements of his coalition government so far. Appreciating the efforts of the Education Department in revitalising the sector, he urged upon the government schools to improve the standard of education so that people across board prefer to admit their wards in such institutions.
“We need to upgrade basic health infrastructure at district and sub-district hospitals and provide specialist doctors so that people do not have to move from pillar to post for advanced medical treatment,” he stated.
The chief minister further promised to to make Jammu and Kashmir hub of educational excellence. He linked quality of education with generation of ample opportunities of employment in the ‘Age of Knowledge’.
“Intelligence is in our genes. We will channelize it to bring J&K on top,” he said.
However, he also took an opportunity to counter the opposition criticism of his four month-old government. Attacking the earlier NC-Congress run government he claimed, “the previous regime has left us scratching bottoms of empty coffers. In 2002, when we took over reins from a similar Government which had been voted out of power, we succeeded in bringing the State out of darkness and restoring people’s confidence by providing a corruption-free administration.”
With the memories of devastating floods last year still fresh and people still grappling to overcome their loss, he claimed that the state government has submitted a comprehensive proposal for Flood Protection and Management to the Central Government under which an additional flood channel has been conceived.