J K News Today

Jammu, November 7

Since April 4 when Mehbooba Mufti assumed office of Chief Minister of Jammu and Kashmir , she has been urging her ministers to reach out to people. This message she has repeated umpteenth number of times, both here and the summer capital of Srinagar.

Repeating of the same message time and again – today as well when the secretariat offices opened in the winter capital city of Jammu  and she chaired a meeting of her ministers – suggests that her ministers are immune to the idea of reaching out to the people.

This raises  serious questions about   ministers  and their public interaction as also their administrative  skills and political acumen . All of them barring two of them – Education Minister  Naeem Akhtar and his deputy Priya Sethi- are elected.

It has been observed that these ministers  were on picnic  at tourist places in  Kashmir as long as it was normal and throbbing with heart-warming signs of life  . And immediately after the troubles broke out  early July, they were cocooned in their homes, afraid of visiting offices even, leave aside their visiting the constituencies. Others embarked on flight to Jammu and Leh to oversee working of their departments there while the Valley was in flames literally.

She  had to do  everything by herself. She had no  colleagues around to assist her . There were times when she could not get them to hold cabinet meeting. The rare cabinet meetings were crisscross of interests in the industry of transfers. The policy decision took backseat and the transfers were in the  driving seat with  a bang.

Mehbooba Mufti Monday exhorted the ministers that the government would work “with the resolve to accomplish the agenda of peace  harmony and development for Jammu and Kashmir.

She said this while speaking at the meeting of Council of Ministers, at the Civil Secretariat, here.

“Addressing the meeting, Chief Minister said that all of us need to put in our best efforts for the betterment of Jammu and Kashmir with sincerity, seriousness and honesty and reach out to the people and provide them the much-needed relief,” an official release said . But she knows it better that  how serious are her ministers in working honestly and sincerity of purpose.

The Chief Minister said that high on the agenda of the Government is the focus on development, good governance, transparency and corruption-free administration. Again all these elements are missing among a majority of her ministers both from PDP and BJP, anyone  who has interacted with them  has  their tale about their “competence and honesty”.  The pun is intended.