We are promise bound to improve living of people on border says Jitendra Singh
Union Minister Jitendra Singh visited a camp housing people affected by cross-border shelling here and assured them of early construction of underground bunkers for their safety.
Singh, the Minister of State in the Prime Minister's Office, interacted with the people living in the shelter at Chann Khatrian in Hiranagar sector, after days of intense firing and shelling by Pakistani troops across the International Border (IB) and the Line of Control (LoC), which left 12 people dead and thousands displaced.
Accompanied by several BJP leaders including Hiranagar MLA Kuldeep Raj, the minister heard their grievances.
However, a group of the displaced people protested after the minister left the camp, claiming that he did not listen to them.
He was in a hurry and left soon after the people started reminding him about the promises made to the border residents by the BJP. We want concrete steps, not hallow promises, one of the protesters said.
Earlier, responding to the demand for underground bunkers, Singh said the Centre had sanctioned the plan but the construction work could not take place due to some unavoidable reasons.
"We are promise bound to improve the living condition of the people of the border residents. The construction work on underground bunkers will start soon, Singh said.
In December last year, the Centre announced the construction of 14,460 individual and community bunkers at a cost of Rs 415.73 crore for the people living along the LoC and the IB in Jammu region as a step to ensure their safety in the wake of frequent cross-border shelling.
Twelve people including two BSF personnel have been killed and scores of others injured during nine days of heavy Pakistani shelling along the IB and the LoC since May 15.
The border residents also raised the demand for a piece of land for each family at safer zones as promised by the BJP. The minister said the issue was shelved for the time being after the security agencies raised concern over the proposal.
Jammu and Kashmir has witnessed a spurt in Pakistani shelling and firing this year. Over 800 such incidents have been reported this year, which have left over 44 people, including 18 security personnel, dead and scores injured.