People of J&K eager to join mainstream development: Modi

New Delhi: The people of Jammu and Kashmir are eager to join the mainstream development underway in other parts of the country, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Sunday.

Modi was referring to a ‘back-to-villages’ government programme that had been undertaken in the Kashmir Valley. Jammu and Kashmir is under President’s rule at present.

Addressing the nation through his monthly radio programme Mann Ki Baat, the Prime Minister said the programme was undertaken across 4,500 panchayats of the state in which government officials had to trek long distances to reach each and every village in the valley.

“A certain Mohammed Aslam from Shopian wrote to me on mygov.in saying how the community mobilisation programme of back-to-villages started in June should be undertaken every three months.

“He suggested an online monitoring of the programme. This shows how people of Kashmir are eager to join the mainstream development in the country,” said Modi.

During the mobilisation programme, officials travelled even to remote villages on the border that are constantly under Pakistani fire.

Officials also reached parts of Shopian, Pulwama and Anantnag where gram sabhas were held and government welfare programmes were showcased.

“Citizens of the state participated in huge numbers in these week-long programmes. Villagers discussed issues including health, literacy, water and electricity with officials. Sports kits were distributed, MNERGA job camps were held and horticulture stalls were set up,” he said.

In his address, Modi urged the youth and students across the country to take part in an online quiz to be held next month on the subject of space science and research. The details of the quiz will be available on the website mygov.in from August 1.

The winners of the quiz will get an opportunity to travel to the space research centre in Sriharikota at government expenses in September to directly view the landing of Chandrayaan 2 payloads on the moon.

Modi greatly lauded scientists at the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) in making Chandrayaan 2 a huge success. He also mentioned that the launch of Indian anti-satellite (A-SAT) missile in March was a resounding success.

Talking about the Swachh Bharat mission, Modi spoke about an engineer, Yogesh Saini, and his team who have contributed immensely towards beautification of Delhi through street art and paintings.

On water conservation, Meghalaya came in for praise from the Prime Minister for becoming the first state to formulate a water policy of its own.

Ten Indian children, who won medals in a recently concluded world sports championship held in Moscow exclusively for cancer survivors, also found mention in Modi’s address.