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RAJOURI: Calling upon workers to gear up for Panchayat polls, Former Minister, MLA Darhal and Member of Political Affairs Committee of Peoples Democratic Party Chowdhary Zulfkar Ali has said that elections for panchayats and local bodies are imperative for gross root level development in the state. Addressing workers convention at Rajouri for the first time after Governor Rule, Chowdhary Zulfkar Ali said that Panchayat and local bodies are important to strengthen democracy and these institutions need to be established as earlier as possible. He said that decentralization of power  to the ground level will improve transparency in the system to monitor developmental activities at local levels. He called upon workers to gear up for elections and elect dedicated and committed people for panchayats and local bodies so that local government is established and development is monitored by the people.

Expressing satisfaction over three years of government performance, Zulfkar said that Pir Panjal region get focussed attention during Mufti Mohammad Sayeed and Mehbooba Mufti regime and people are well about the outstanding performance. He said that for the first time in the history, PDP led government gave four Additional Deputy Commissioners for Kotranka, Nowshera, Sunderbani and Kalakote. He added that government provided Medical College at Mehra and Degree College at Kotranka during this period.

Highlighting major developmental works, Zulfkar Ali said that  people of this region get Rs 55 crore for Jammu Poonch Highway and soon a Tunnel  will be constructed on Mughal Road for which government pleaded the case before Central Government and now it has been sanctioned. He said that upgradation of 400KMs of PMGSY Roads in Darhal constituency is itself a testimony of the large scale developmental activities. He added that upgradation of educational networks, face-lifting of Rajouri town providing efficient and accountable administration in the districts of Pir Panjal were big steps of the government in this region.

Terming the last 3 years as golden era in regard of development, Chowdhary Zulfkar Ali said that he is thankful for liberal funding for Darhal from Mehbooba Mufti. He said that for the last 3 years, he brought about 900 crores for developmental projects in Darhal Assembly Constituency.  He added that this constituency has even not get Rs 500 crore in 68 years but in 3 years,  they get Rs 900 crores worth projects.

Listing major projects, Zulfkar said that during 2014 election campaign, he briefed former Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed about the importance of Anas Irrigation Canal project and after taking over as Chief Minister, in his first public address at Kotranka he announced Rs 100 crore funding for the project. He said that this dream project will be completed soon and it will change the fate of farmers and people of the area.   He said that this project was dream of his father who had envisioned better future for his people and now it will be soon realized.  He added that Kotranka-Khawas road was in dilapidated condition for the past many decades and after years of wait Government sanctioned Rs 76 crore for its upgrading under Central Road Fund (CRF) and the work is in progress.

Thanking government for lease of funds for Medical College Rajouri, Zulfkar said that Government Medical College at Mehra was a dream project and the same will be realized soon. He said that Government has released Rs 200 crore for the project and the work is in progress.  He added that the government has already released Rs 15 crore for Samote Kewal Road, Rs 76 crore for Mirasi Morh-Baglaykote -Kotranka road which will be alternate link to connect the area, Rs 2.29 crore for Rajouri -Darhal road, Rs 1.23 crore for Kotdhara-Karhad road and Rs 1.7 crore for Kangar Gali to Panihad road. 

The Minister said that the long pending demand for release of funds for Darhal -Prori Road   has been met by releasing Rs 35 Crore for the project. He said that Ujhan Bridge was under construction for last 4 decades but there was meager funding for the project. He said that he has now brought   Rs 16 Crore for the project which is nearing completion. He added with its completion long pending demand for sustainable connectivity of the people of Nadian, Ujhan, Margan, Sabzian, Malhut, Dhandkote would be met. He also mentioned about Girls Tribal Hostel being constructed at Mehra adding ITI College and Amusement Park in Kotranka have already been approved. He added that besides these major projects, work on a number of small projects is also underway in the constituency.

Others who spoke in the convention included District President Aijaz Ahmed Mirza, senior leaders Manzoor Shah, Fazal Hussain Chouhan, Choudhary Mir Hussain,  Choudhary Mohammad Sadiq, GA Atari, Shafiq Chowdhary, Munaf Malik, Abdul Aziz, Chowdhary Mir Qasim, Tufaikl Chowdhary, Gul Mohammad, Neeraj Kumar, Mani Ram, Balwant Singh, Munshi Khan, Nawab Mukhtar, Manzoor Qazi, Chowdhary Shabir Ahmed,  Nazir Hussain, Mohamad Yousaf and various other youth leaders.

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