New Delhi: As the Union territory of Jammu and Kashmir awaits the resumption of the electoral process with assembly polls likely in a few months, BJP’s confidence about a good turnout and its own prospects seem to be growing. with the party laying store by the ” positive response ” to the Modi government’s welfare schemes and its promise to build ” Naya Kashmir “.
As per the assessment of the top party leaders, foremost among the welfare schemes making a difference in J & K is the ” Ujjwala Yojna ” under which double cylinders are being distributed to the families living in the hilly areas. Besides, the ” Ayushman Bha rat ” scheme has also gained strong traction at the ground level. leading people to appreciate the benefit of stronger integration with the Centre.
While sporadic incidents of violence continue, terror groups . have not succeeded and restoration of normalcy is best illustrated by the revival of tourism in J & K with 1.62 crore tourists having visited the UT since January this year, the highest yearly footfall in the past 75 years.
BJP’s confidence has been boosted after the successful public meetings of home minister Amit Shah during his recent visit to J & K . He was the first Union minister in 35 years to address a public rally, also Shah’s first since Article 370 was neutered in August 2019, in Baramulla town, once a terror hub. His other rally at Rajouri in the Jammu region was also successful as it reached out to hitherto – marginalized communities like Paharis, who were assured of ST status. Encouraged by the response, BJP, contrary to perception, refused to have a truck with Congress rebel Ghulam Nabi Azad’s just-launched outfit, Democratic Azad Party.
According to party sources, the rally venue with a capacity of 35000 was jam-packed with the crowd echoing Shah’s chants of ” Bharat Mata Ki Jai “, a reflection of the changed perception among the Valley residents, three years after the abrogation of Article 370. ” The most satisfying feeling was to see the warmth shown by women present in the rally. Our assessment is that the women of the valley are pleased with the LPG cylinders which have been distributed across the state under the ‘ Ujjwala ‘ scheme, ” a senior BJP leader said and added, ” The state government has done a good job by providing double cylinders in the hilly areas where refilling is also an arduous exercise. ” The BJP functionary said the ” Ujjawa la ‘ scheme stands out as the most popular as the households living in hilly areas used to face immense difficulties in managing firewood, particularly after snow, fall.
Polls in J & K are expected only after the revision of the electoral rolls is complete. The final J & K roll is scheduled to be published on November 25. It is expected to include groups marginalized during the previous regimes, such as people who migrated from West Pakistan, those displaced from PoK in 1947, and during subsequent Indo – Pakistan wars, and other displaced communities like Kashmiri Pandits. Also, new voters who have been residents in J & K for six months and more can have their names added to the rolls as long as they are excluded from the rolls of other states / UTs.
The party leader said the valley’s response to the ” Tiranga Yatra ” was also an indication that people have responded positively and want the return of peace in the valley, leading to a major blow to separatist forces.
” Over 70 families that lost their loved ones to terrorism, took part in the Tiranga Yatra, which is a testimony to people distancing themselves from militancy and the separatists ‘ demands, ” the BJP leader said. The response appears all the more significant as BJP, unlike Mehbooba Mufti’s PDP and National Conference of Abdullahs, has opposed the resumption of talks with Pakistan.