Minister for Forest, Environment and Ecology, Choudhary Lal Singh unfurled the National Flag at Sports Stadium, Kathua and took salute at march past comprising contingents from Police, CRPF, Forest Protection Force, Police Training School, Kathua, NCC and students from various schools besides pipers.Felicitating the people on 69th Republic Day, Lal Singh said that India is the biggest democracy of the world and brotherhood, communal harmony and tolerance are its key attributes. He said the past generations have maintained the ethos and democratic values and now it’s our responsibility to carry forward this legacy. He said India is emerging power having fast growing economy which is also making its mark in space and other fields of science.He said Jammu & Kashmir is on the path of development and people of the state have witnessed lot of sufferings in the past besides the present border situation is increasing the woes of border dwellers but the Government is committed to mitigate their sufferings and every possible help will be provided to them during adverse conditions.
Lal Singh said the several key development projects are in offing in the district as Kathua district has diverse topography which has to be according catered to and developmental initiatives so envisioned are being implemented to give boost to the economy of the area.Referring to the initiatives of improving connectivity in the district the Minister said that ‘Atal Setu’ Bridge connecting J&K with Punjab and Himachal will not only improve the connectivity but tourism potential of the area will be further explored as the Ranjit Sagar lake is offering Steamer service for tourists. He further said with the completion of Keerian Gandyal and Juthana bridges interstate connectivity will also improve.Referring to the developmental schemes undertaken in the district, the minister informed that road schemes under PMGSY& CRF are improving the overall road connectivity of Kathua. He said the district has vigorously put in collective efforts for women empowerment under which BBBP to improve the sex ratio in the district besides creating a positive outlook for girl child in our society.
Lal Singh said that the present dispensation is giving focused attention towards Health, Education, PHE & Power sector to foster the development pace.The Minister also highlighted the efforts initiated by the Forest Department to rejuvenate the natural water bodies besides conserving the wetlands and preserving the heritage of Jasrota.He said that as a responsible citizen every stakeholder shall contribute in the developmental process and join hands to eradicate the social vices .Among others Legislators Rajeev Jasrotia, Jeevan Lal, Deputy Commissioner Kathua Rohit Khajuria, SSP Kathua Suleman Choudhary, Additional Deputy Commissioner Kathua Rishpal Singh, District Officers, officers of various department, prominent citizens and large number of people and students were present on the occasion.Impressive cultural items depicting patriotic themes were also presented by students of various educational institutions. Lal Singh also felicitated the best performers in the field of academics, sports and other co-curricular activities.At Billawar, ADC Joginder Singh Rai and at Basohli, ADC Sanjay Gupta hoisted the tricolor and took salute at march past .Similar functions were held at Hiranagar,Bani and other parts of the district.