Progress of J

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Srinagar, May 24 (UNI) President Pratibha Devisingh Patil has said Jammu and Kashmir with its resources, potential and the willingness of its people to work hard will move forward on the path of development, prosperity and peace'.

The progress of Jammu and Kashmir is the progress of India, she said addressing the 2nd Convocation of Sher-i-Kashmir Institute of Medical Sciences (SKIMS) here last night.

After a period of turmoil, J&K was progressing well, she said adding that wide ranging initiatives are being implemented to revitalize its economy and build a new peaceful and prosperous state.

However, she said it is important that the development process is inclusive and covers all parts of the state as well as all sections of the population.

The President said the state government is making every effort to create the conditions for faster development through various schemes and projects.

The Central government, she said, through sponsored programmes and the Prime Minister's Reconstruction Plan has been a partner in the development efforts of Jammu and Kashmir.

She said the state has tremendous economic potential and its people have immense talent.

''I am confident that the people of Jammu and Kashmir can look to their future with hope and confidence', she said.

''It gives me great pleasure'' to participate in the convocation of the Sher-i-Kashmir Institute of Medical Sciences in this beautiful city of Srinagar, she said.

''I am delighted to be in Jammu and Kashmir on my first visit here since I assumed the office of the President of India last year'.

She said Jammu and Kashmir has for centuries attracted people and enthralled them with its scenic beauty. Kashmir has been described as a 'Paradise on Earth', by countless travellers who through the ages have been here.

The beauty of this land is such that the Mughal Emperor, Jehangir described Kashmir in the immortal words, 'Agar firdaus bar ru-e zamin ast, Hami ast o-hami ast o-hami ast.' (If there is paradise on Earth, It is this, it is this, it is this).

She said the people of Jammu and Kashmir have impressed all with the tolerance and resilience that they have demonstrated over a period of time.

UNI BAS RP GC1558

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