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PM Modi in Srinagar: ‘Congress was misguiding Jammu and Kashmir on Article 370’

Prime Minister Narendra Modi, addressing a public rally in Srinagar’s Bakshi stadium, on Thursday hit out at the Opposition, including the Congress, claiming that some families were misguiding not only the people of Jammu and Kashmir, but the entire nation over the now-abrogated Article 370.

On August 5, 2019, the Centre, led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, repealed Article 370 and divided the former state into the Union territories of Jammu & Kashmir and Ladakh.

“For decades, the Congress and its allies misled the people of Jammu and Kashmir, the country for political gains in the name of Article 370. The people of Jammu and Kashmir are now aware of the truth that whether Jammu and Kashmir benefited from Article 370 or only a few families took advantage of it. The talent of Jammu and Kashmir is getting its due respect today as there is no Article 370 now,” Modi said.

Modi arrived in Srinagar to unveil a slew of development projects worth more than ₹6,400 crore and address a public meeting. This is Modi’s first visit to the Kashmir valley after the abrogation of Article 370 in August 2019.

Modi attended the “Viksit Bharat Viksit Jammu Kashmir” programme at Srinagar’s Bakshi Stadium where he announced multiple projects related to agriculture and tourism.

Modi unveiled multiple development projects worth more than ₹6,400 crore at the ‘Viksit Bharat, Viksit Jammu Kashmir’ programme at the stadium.

“The feeling of coming to this heaven on earth is beyond words… There was an era when the law implemented in other parts of the country could not be implemented in Jammu and Kashmir. There was an era when schemes for the welfare of the poor were implemented across the country, but our brothers and sisters of Jammu and Kashmir were deprived of the benefits. And see now, how the times have changed,” Modi said at the public gathering.

He also distributed appointment letters to nearly 1,000 newly recruited government employees in Jammu and Kashmir and also, interact with the beneficiaries of various central schemes, including women achievers, farmers and entrepreneurs.

Hundreds of BJP supporters, wearing tricoloured turbans, also reached the venue while security personnel had a tough time managing the crowd. Officials said tight security arrangements were in place but there were no restrictions on the movement of people.

Life was normal across the Kashmir valley and most of the shops and other business establishments were open.

The security apparatus has secured the road from Badamibagh Cantonment to Bakshi Stadium. Tricolours, BJP flags and hoardings welcoming Modi have been put up along the route that will be taken by Modi. Stringent security arrangements have been put in place to ensure an incident-free visit, they said.

Security personnel have been deployed in large numbers along the routes to be taken by Modi in Srinagar while barricades have been set up at several places, they said.

The prime minister also launched 43 projects that will develop a wide range of pilgrimage and tourist sites across the country. He also launched the first-ever countrywide initiative to identify the pulse of the nation on tourism in the form of ‘Dekho Apna Desh People’s Choice 2024’.

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