J&K people will not face difficulties in celebrating Eid: Modi

New Delhi: As Kashmir reels under heavy security clampdown, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday assured its people they will not face any trouble in celebrating Eid on 12 August and that the situation in the Valley will return to normal gradually.

In a televised address three days after his government removed special status for Jammu and Kashmir and bifurcated it into two Union Territories, Modi laid out a development agenda for the region’s economic and social welfare.

Reaching out to people of Jammu and Kashmir, Modi also said his government will work sincerely for a “naya Jammu Kashmir and naya Ladakh“. The prime minister said the patriotic people of Jammu and Kashmir have stood up against Pakistan’s conspiracy of terrorism and separatism, and that his government will work towards fulfilling their aspirations.

Referring to current situation in Kashmir, Modi complimented the security forces for maintaining peace in the Valley and said people will be able to celebrate Eid without any difficulties. He said the government is providing all possible help to those from Jammu and Kashmir who live elsewhere and want to return home to celebrate the festival.

“I want to assure friends of Jammu and Kashmir that the situation will gradually return to normalcy and their difficulties will ease,” he said. “The government is ensuring that people in Jammu and Kashmir don’t face any difficulties in celebrating Eid,” Modi said. He also extended Eid greetings to the people.

Jammu and Kashmir Governor Satya Pal Malik earlier issued directions to officials to facilitate return of outside students to their states who wish to go to their homes for Eid. The governor has also sanctioned Rs 1 lakh each to designated liaison officers for organising Eid festivities for J&K students who are studying in other states and are unable to come to their homes on the occasion, a Raj Bhawan spokesman said.

He passed the directions for setting up telephone lines in Deputy Commissioners’ offices for such students to talk to their families back home. In a meeting, Malik reviewed arrangements for enabling people to perform Friday prayers and celebrate Eid-ul-Azha on Monday.

Modi, in his remarks, also said that the patriotic people of Jammu and Kashmir have stood up against Pakistan’s conspiracy of terrorism and separatism. Describing Jammu and Kashmir as the “crown of India,” Modi said change can be brought about there.