Minister for Labour, Planning and Development Mr Ajay Kumar Sadhotra on Sunday sought larger participation of people at the grass roots level in decision making, saying it is imperative for meeting the developmental requirements of the rural areas and strengthening local governance.Addressing a public meeting at Chak Jagran in Marh Constituency this afternoon, the Minister said the revolutionary initiative of putting Panchayats in place is a step towards this direction.“With this in view, Chief Minister Omar Abdullah took a revolutionary initiative of holding Panchayat elections, which is one of the landmark achievements of the coalition government”, he added.Sadhotra said empowering people has been a cherished agenda of National Conference which started as a mass movement under the sagacious stewardship of Sher-e-Kashmir Sheikh Mohammed Abdullah. He said the party is committing to satiate the political, developmental and economic aspirations of the people of all the three regions of Kashmir, Jammu and Ladakh. “For achieving self reliance and inclusive development, the people have to strengthen hands of Mr Omar Abdullah”, he added.
Sadhotra cautioned the people against elements inimical to unity, saying they were employing all deceptive tactics to create wedge between various segments of the society. “These elements are required to be alienated in order to safeguard the interests of the people”, he said and urged his party workers to play their role in making the people aware about the anti-people activities of the peace inimical forces.Referring to the measures taken to give fillip to developmental initiatives, Mr Sadhotra said that a massive effort is underway to ensure inclusive development of the three regions with focus on remote and far-flung areas. He said, while thrust is being laid on ensuring infrastructural development in key sectors like roads and building, health, education, power and drinking water sectors, the government led by Chief Minister Omar Abdullah is also prioritizing employment generation schemes. On this occasion, a large number of youth joined National Conference. The Minister welcomed their entry into the party and hoped this will further strengthen the mass movement launched by the founding fathers of the party.