Jammu: Lieutenant Governor, Manoj Sinha today congratulated the people of Jammu and Kashmir and the election machinery for the successful conduct of District Development Council (DDC) and Panchayat Elections in the Union Territory.
The Lt Governor was addressing the media persons during the Press Conference here at the Convention Centre.
“I thank and congratulate the people of J&K, especially the First-time voters, Independent Candidates and Political Parties for strengthening grass root democracy and paving way for progressive future of the UT and participating in the elections with such enthusiasm & zeal and making them a massive success”, said the Lt Governor.
Giving a new direction to the developmental process, people from all sections of the society – Youth, Women, Elders, Farmers, Labourers, Businessmen, voted in large numbers and played their crucial role in strengthening the grass root democracy so that progress and prosperity shall reach every citizen of the Union Territory, he added.
Speaking on enthusiasm shown by first-time voters, the Lt Governor observed that the participation of first time voters in DDC and Panchayat elections is a matter of pride for our democratic set up. Rejecting the regressive agenda, people voted for progress and development, he added.
Strengthening the 3-Tiers of Panchayati Raj System in J&K, the DDC elections were held for the first time in the UT and the response to the DDC Elections has been very encouraging, he said.
“I have fulfilled the promise of free and fair elections. Except for one or two incidents, the elections were conducted in free and fair manner”, the Lt Governor remarked.
Despite harsh weather conditions, the polling stations across the UT witnessed long queues of enthusiastic voters and people came out to vote in large numbers, with the voter turnout percentage even in the traditionally low percentage areas registering manifold increase as compared to earlier held Parliamentary elections, which itself manifests that faith of the people of Jammu and Kashmir in the democratic process has deepened, he added.
He further said that with the culmination of DDC elections, the people of J&K will, for the first time in history, see a truly empowered grass root democracy entailing direct funding and decentralized decision making in the planning and development of rural areas.
“The 3-tier democracy will make J&K modern, AatmaNirbhar, besides giving a determined push to the developmental process. I am sure the elected representatives will give momentum to the developmental schemes on the ground”, maintained the Lt Governor.
He also lauded the State Election Commission, J&K Police, Security Forces, all on-duty officers/officials and media persons for working day and night for ensuring successful and peaceful conduct of DDC and Panchayat elections.
“I am confident that with the elected representatives of J&K complementing the Government’s efforts, J&K will reach new heights of development and welfare schemes for the people would reach every household”, said the Lt Governor.
The Lt Governor also announced that the Hon’ble Prime Minister is going to launch SEHAT – Health Insurance scheme for the entire J&K on December 26, 2020 to cover the remaining One crore population which was not covered under Ayushman Bharat scheme.
Pertinently, under Ayushman Bharat PM Jan Arogya Yojana, eligible beneficiaries as per SECC 2011 were covered under Health Cover of Rs 5 Lakhs. Under PMJAY scheme, 30 lakh people are being covered in J&K.
“With this, J&K will be among the first in the country to achieve Universal Health Coverage”, he maintained.
He further informed that the programmes will be organized across the UT and the distribution of Golden cards will be started on the same day. Around 16 Lakhs registrations have been done as on date and the registrations for the rest of the beneficiaries will be done on war footing, he added.
The Lt Governor has also extended Christmas and New Year greetings to the people of J&K in advance.
Sh. BVR Subrahmanyam, Chief Secretary; Sh. Rohit Kansal, Principal Secretary, Power Development Department and Information Department; Sh. Sanjeev Verma, Divisional Commissioner, Jammu and Dr Syed Sehrish Asgar, Director Information & Public Relations were present on the occasion.