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Omar, Mehbooba demand similar status for Chenab, Pir Panchal regions

Srinagar, Feb 8: Declaring Ladakh as a separate division on Friday evoked mixed response with political parties seeking similar status for Chenab and Pir Panchal regions.

Jammu and Kashmir Government Friday approved creation of a separate administrative and revenue division for Ladakh. This division will comprise Leh and Kargil districts with its headquarters at Leh.


The Government has also approved creation of the posts of divisional commissioner (Ladakh), Leh and Inspector General of Police (Ladakh), Leh.
Although the decision has been welcomed by political parties but they have questioned “the real intention behind it”.

Former chief minister Mehbooba Mufti has welcomed the decision to give Ladakh the status of a separate division.
“The decision of giving a separate division status should have been collectively taken for Chenab valley and Pir Panchal regions too along with Ladakh if it was meant for the greater good of people,” she said.

Mehbooba, who is the PDP president, had earlier warned of agitation if special status was given only to Ladakh region.
She said, “Ladakh is a far-flung area and already had a hill development council at a place in Leh and Kargil and now making it a separate division is a big deal.”

“The Pir Panjal and Chenab valley areas are also backward and underdeveloped with a huge population so both these areas should also be given the status of a separate division,” said Mehbooba.

She claimed the decision as a BJP driven agenda and said, “I feel the Governor is following the agenda of BJP as they were always against the idea of giving the separate division to Chenab valley and Pir Panchal areas.”

Former chief minister and senior National Conference leader Omar Abdullah said if voted to power, the government “will grant division status to Chenab valley and Pir Panchal regions as already laid out in our regional autonomy promise”.“2019 should the people of J&K repose faith in @JKNC_ our government will grant division status to Chenab valley & Pir Panchal regions as already laid out in our regional autonomy promise.We will take care of regional & sub-regional aspirations. We won’t adopt the pick & choose approach of the Governor but will instead take a holistic view & address the wider problems. Our regional autonomy document will be our template,” he wrote on twitter.

National Conference General Secretary Ali Mohammad Sagar said that only the elected government should take any such decisions.Congress spokesperson, Ravindar Sharma, said, “Normally, these type of decisions should have come from the elected government.”

He said that decision should be implemented properly.“All those facilities should be provided to the people, who are enjoyed by the people of other regions,” he demanded.

BJP spokesperson Altaf Thakur thanked Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Governor Satya Pal Malik for announcing separate division of Ladakh region.

Welcoming the decision of creating separate division for Ladakh, Peoples Conference chairman Sajad Gani Lone, demanded creation of separate divisions for Chenab and Pir Panchal regions to end miseries of people living there.

In a tweet Lone said, “Welcome the creation of separate division for Ladakh. Puts an end to their miseries. Equally important is the demand for separate divisions for Peer Panchal and Chenab. Smaller divisions will improve governance. And it will b a great relief for the inhabitants.

Chairman Peoples Democratic Front (PDF) Hakeem Yaseen has welcomed government decision to make Ladakh region of the state as a separate administrative division. He has urged the Governor S P Malik to fulfill the long pending demand of the people of Chenab valley and Peer Panchal in Jammu division and Kamraz and Maraz areas in Kashmir to make them as separate administrative divisions.