Harsh Dev Singh NPP MLA and its chairman has urged upon the Jammu based Ministers to rise to the occasion, assert and asseverate in view of persistent and continued neglect and deprivation of Jammu region and its people by the Kashmir centric leadership at the helm of affairs. He said that people of Jammu were greatly aggrieved and offended with the highly parochial and biased treatment doled out to the region by present coalition in all fields and the criminal silence maintained by its representatives in the council of Ministers. He said the culpable inaction and despicable apathy on the part of Jammu Ministers had led to perpetuation of bias and discrimination against Jammu and scope of such discrimination had been extended to cover even the dead and deceased including the martyrs of Jammu region. He regretted that Jammu based Ministers had been heard of reacting in the cabinet meetings only in cases of vested interests pertaining to transfers of their favouriates but had failed to assert and respond in the face of highly discriminatory and anti Jammu policies pursued by the Kashmir leadership.
Making a special mention of the Jammu based Martyrs who were victims of Pak terror, Mr. Singh said that the govt. had resorted to delay and deny in the matter of provision of ex-gratia to their families including rehabilitation measures. He regretted that two IRP Jawans namely constable Santosh Singh and Constable Azad Chand were killed by Pak sponsored militants in Handwara while performing their duties in early March 2013 but the State govt. failed to provide any ex-gratia to their distressed families till date. He said, likewise, the benefits under SRO 43 were also not provided to the families of the deceased which was most shocking and highly reprehensible. On the contrary, Mr. Singh pointed out that Haryana govt. had announced an ex-gratia of Rs. 25 lacs in favour of next to kins of its native constables who were killed in Srinagar in the same month i.e, March 2013 in a suicide attack on CRP camp. Besides the said Haryana govt. had also provided Jobs to the dependents of its deceased soldiers without delay.
Mr. Harsh Dev Singh further condemned the state govt. for its neglect in payment of ex-gratia to the family of Chamel Singh who was killed in Kot Lakhpat Jail of Pakistan. He said that Sarbjit Singh who was also killed in similar circumstances in the same Jail was given the status of a martyr by Punjab Govt. besides his family members having been given ex-gratia of Rs. 1.25 crore in addition to two jobs in the family.
Mr. Harsh Dev Singh pointed out that even earlier during the Amar Nath Ji land agitation several Jammunites had lost their lives due to hostile govt. and police action but govt. had declined to pay ex-gratia in the cases. And when it came to stone pelters of Kashmir, the govt. lost no time to act and to provide relief and rehabilitation of affected families, he asserted.
Accusing the coalition govt. of double standards, Mr. Singh called upon the Jammu based Ministers to shed off their inhibitions and assert in view of growing public resentment against their inaction and their second fiddle role.