Minister for PHE, Irrigation & Flood Control, Mr. Sham Lal Sharma has stressed the need for strengthening the bonds of social fabric adding that anti-national forces are trying to disintegrate the society in the name of religion, casteism and trying to weaken the strong social structure, real strength of India’s pluralistic society. He called for collective efforts to defeat the nefarious design of such forces.
Speaking at a function organized by Pt. Prem Nath Bhat Memorial Trust to pay tributes to Martyr Prem Nath Bhat, here today, the Minister said that “our neighbor has unleashed a proxy war which has claimed numerous lives in the country, especially in Jammu and Kashmir during the past over two decades, which resulted in mass scale exodus of Kashmiri Pandit community. The firing on LoC and IB at different places is a routine affair, which has created an abnormal condition for the people, especially those living along the border. The time has come when our nation should show a brave face to thwart the design of enemy once for all. He said India is the largest democracy in the world and everyone enjoys the liberty on every respect. At the times of crisis, the nation is one and ready to face any challenge with bravery and courage”, he asserted.
Paying rich tributes to martyr Pt. Prem Nath Bhat, the Minister said that he fought for the right of the community and earned great fame in the field of social and legal fields. He said late Bhat was not only loved by his own community but was admired by others as well including Kashmiri Muslims. His services and contribution will be remembered for many years to come and he will remain a source of inspiration for generations to come. Mr. Sham said.While appreciating the Kashmiri Pandit community, the Minister said that entire nation shares their agony which they have suffered due to militancy. He said this community is known for its intellectual acumen which helped them to sustain even in many odd times. He hoped that the community will continue to serve the nation with the spirit of patriotism like always and contribute towards strengthening the communal harmony and prosperity of the nation. He said the problems of the community are well known to the Centre and State Government and constant efforts are being made to mitigate them.
The Minister honored two Kashmiri journalists Ms. Alka Lahori and Mr. Shiban Khabri with Pt. Prem Nath Bhat Memorial Award in recognition of their meritorious services in the field of journalism. The award carries a citation and a shawl.Veteran journalist and Trustee, Mr. Yash Bhasin and former President Jammu Bar Association and senior Advoate, Mr. B.S. Slathia also addressed the gathering and highlighted the services of late Pt. Prem Nath Bhat.Several prominent personalities of Kashmiri Pandit community including, Chairman of Pt. Prem Nath Bhat Memorial, Mr. A.N. Pandita, Prof. R.L. Shant, Dr. R.L. Bhat, Mr. K.K. Khosa, Mr. H.L.Bhat, Dr. K.L. Choudhary, besides large number of Pandit community members were present on the occasion.