Mehbooba pitches for inclusion of Jammu, Srinagar in smart cities plan

Mehbooba MuftiThe Jammu and Kashmir (J&K) Government has asked the Centre to include Srinagar and Jammu, the two capital cities of the state, among the smart cities. Mehbooba Mufti, Chief Minister (CM), J&K, discussed the issue with Narendra Modi, Prime Minister of India, besides allocation of an additional over four lakh metric tonnes of food grains to the state, over a phone call.

According to a state government spokesperson, Mehbooba and Modi discussed the overall political and developmental scenario of Jammu and Kashmir.

This was for the first time when Mehbooba talked to the Prime Minister after becoming the Chief Minister of the restive state.

The two ministers discussed over a wide range of issues concerning the state. She appealed Modi to include the two capital cities of Srinagar and Jammu as smart cities under the ‘Smart Cities Mission’, an official statement from the state government said.

The Chief Minister asked for allocation of an additional 4.30 lakh metric tonnes foodgrains to the state over and above what is targeted under the public distribution system as part of the National Food Security Act, it said.

She asked Prime Minister for continuation of special dispensation of 50 per cent in promotion quota in All India Services–Indian Administrative Service, Indian Police Service and Indian Forest Service–for state service officers for another five years, beyond December 31, 2013.

This move will help the state in overcoming the shortage of IAS, IPS and IFS officers.

Earlier, in February, NN Vohra, Governor,  J&K, had sought an urgent decision regarding extension of the special dispensation to provide 50 per cent promotion quota for induction into all-India services for five years beyond December 31, 2013 in the three services. This provide 50 per cent quota for promotion to these services compared to 33.3 per cent in other states.

“The Prime Minister assured the Chief Minister that the Centre will offer its full support in the holistic development of J&K state,” the statement said.

In the meeting, Mehbooba, who assumed charge of the PDP-BJP government on April 4, also informed the Prime Minister about her meetings with various cabinet ministers including Arun Jaitley, Finance Minister. She also requested Centre’s assistance for implementing the ‘Agenda of Alliance’ formulated by the two parties in 2015.

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