The situation in Jammu and Kashmir is peaceful and the newly formed union territory is gradually coming back to normalcy, said Governor Satya Pal Malik after taking stock of the situation. The BJP-led Narendra Modi government earlier this week scrapped Article 370, Article 35A and bifurcated Jammu and Kashmir into two Union Territories (UTs). President Ram Nath Kovind on Friday gave assent to the legislation that will come into existence on October 31.
Applauding Prime Minister Narendra Modi's speech after Article 370 was scrapped, Governor Malik on Friday said, "PM Modi's speech has had a calming effect. The situation is peaceful."
Governor Malik's speech came a few days ahead of Eid-ul-Azha. Speaking on the festival, he assured that relaxations will be given before and on Eid, adding that the festival will be celebrated in a proper manner. He took note of various animal mandis allowed at different places by the administration for buying and selling of animals on the occasion of Eid. He also took stock of the ration supply in fair price shops which were seen open in various localities on Friday. An arrangement has been made for over 2 lakh goats and 30 lakh poultry.
The Governor said that a total of 1,600 employees are on duty to ensure essential services like power supply, water and sanitation. Another 10,000 people in Kashmir are reporting for their duties. He also asserted that the ATMs of most of the banks are operational. An advance salary for August of daily wage workers has also been released.
"'Langars' are operating at TRC, hospitals and other public places in Srinagar. We have two months stock of ration. There is sufficient stock of petrol, diesel and regular supply for LPG," said the Governor.
On the matter of reopening of schools and colleges, the official spokesperson of the University of Jammu, Dr Vinay Thusoo, said, "This is for the information of all concerned that the University of Jammu shall remain open on August 10. However, schedule of admissions, classwork and examinations shall be notified separately."
District Commissioner of Reasi district, Indu Kanwal Chib said that all schools and colleges in Reasi will also open on Friday. The Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir will have a Lieutenant Governor and its Assembly will consist of 107 seats, which will increase to 114 after delimitation of constituencies. Twenty-four seats in the Assembly will remain vacant as they fall under Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK). The Union Territory of Ladakh will not have a Legislative Assembly.