`Youths must fight to maintain country`s unity and integrity`

Last Updated: Saturday, January 25, 2014 - 23:55

Dehradun: Noting that some of India`s neighbours are out to disrupt its peace through terror activities, Uttarakhand Governor Aziz Qureshi on Saturday exhorted the youth to fight and defeat forces inimical to the country`s unity and integrity.
"Some of our neighbouring countries, through terrorist activity, want to destroy our peace. Divisive forces, for their vested interests, bring in violence. All this will stop development and our country will be steeped in unemployment, poverty and backwardness," Qureshi said in his message on the eve of Republic Day.

"It is the duty, therefore, of every Indian, especially the youth, to resolve to face these divisive and destructive powers boldly and defeat them," he said.

Paying homage to those who lost their lives in the June calamity in the state, he expressed his gratefulness to the security forces for their role in evacuating such a large number of survivors to safety.

The Governor said the disaster dealt a major blow to the state`s progress, and hoped that with generous help from the Centre the state would not take long to return to normalcy.

"There was great loss of life and property. Roads were swept away and so were houses, bridges and fields. But we did not lose hope and kept making efforts to fight the situation and return to normalcy," he said, and thanked the Prime Minister for providing a Rs 730-crore grant.

"We set up Kedar Ghati Special Authority and have decided to form six companies of SDRF on the lines of NDRF," he said.

To mitigate the effects of such a disasters in future, a strategy must be worked out to train people in disaster mitigation and management, he said.

Emphasising that education plays a crucial role in fighting backwardness, Qureshi said good teachers should be appointed in schools in remote and rural areas to provide better facilities to children.

"The growing number of private universities and unemployment is a matter of concern. We must keep a strict eye on institutions who are running merely to make money. Also, we must see to it that institutions of higher studies run courses which are job-oriented," he said.

There is a lack of health units in hilly and rural areas. However, it is good that AIIMS has come up in Rishikesh.

"Uttarakhand has abundant ecological resources and a rich cultural heritage. We must preserve these for posterity," he said, adding the extension of industrial package given by the Centre till 2017 had encouraged firms to come to the state.

He said a new generation of young voters has now come up and they have the opportunity to prevent leaders?who take "politics as a business"?from coming forward.

PTI

First Published: Saturday, January 25, 2014 - 23:55

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