PM In J&K Today, First Visit After Scrapping Of Article 370

Srinagar: Prime Minister Narendra Modi will address his first public event in Jammu and Kashmir today, more than two years after the federal government abolished the state’s special status and divided it into two Union Territories.

PM Modi’s visit will be guarded with extreme caution. A large crowd is set to greet him in Palli, with tens of thousands anticipated to attend a BJP-organized celebration in the Jammu region.

PM Modi will lead a ceremony commemorating Panchayati Raj, a day dedicated to grassroots democracy.

Today’s event will see PM Modi lead the region “into a new era of development”, Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha told reporters.

Although PM Modi has made informal visits to celebrate holidays with troops stationed along the Line of Control, today’s ceremony would be his first major public presence in Jammu & Kashmir since August 2019.

The Prime Minister will lay the foundation stones for over 20,000 crore in development projects, including the opening of the Banihal-Qazigund road tunnel, which will provide all-weather connection between the two parts of the Union Territory.

The Prime Minister’s Office, or PMO, stated in a statement that he will commemorate National Panchayati Raj Day and address gramme sabhas across the country.

Seeking to develop and rejuvenate 75 water bodies in every district of the country, PM Modi will launch an initiative named ‘Amrit Sarovar’, the PMO said.

The 8.45-kilometer Banihal-Qazigund road tunnel, which cost over 3,100 crore to construct, will reduce the distance between Banihal and Qazigund by 16 kilometres and travel time by roughly one-and-a-half hours.

The tunnel is made up of two tubes, one for each direction of travel, with a cross passage every 500 metres for maintenance and emergency evacuation.

PM Modi will lay the foundation stone for the Ratle and Kwar hydropower projects, an 850 megawatt facility to be built on the Chenab river in Kishtwar at a cost of roughly 5,300 crore, among other projects.He will also lay the foundation stone for the 540 megawatt Kwar hydropower project, which would cost over Rs 4,500 crore and will be built on the same river. It’s interesting to note that this is the second time the Ratle project’s foundation stone has been laid. The project’s foundation stone was set by then-Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in 2013.

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