JAMMU: Jammu and Kashmir Governor Satya Pal Malik on Friday said it was a matter of "deep anguish" that some of the state's youth, who had been influenced by extremist ideologies, were leaving professional studies to pick up a gun.
Malik, in his message on the eve of the 70th Republic Day, said a number of innocent lives had been lost due to "mindless and dastardly violence".
"It is a matter of deep anguish that a number of our youths, some of whom were pursuing professional studies, were influenced by extremist ideologies to pick up the gun and join groups which perpetrate violence," he said.
Malik said this had added to the sufferings of the people, particularly those residing in the Valley.
"A number of precious and innocent lives have been lost due to mindless and dastardly violence. As I have said earlier also, our hearts go out to the bereaved families who have lost their dear ones," he said.
The governor stressed on the need to find ways to remove the ugly scars from the state's "beautiful landscape" by strengthening the peace discourse.
"This is our collective responsibility and can be discharged only with active cooperation and support of our people," Malik said.
He said a confrontationist approach and violence could not resolve any issue.
Malik said Jammu and Kashmir was passing through a crucial phase which offered challenges and opportunities.
He said the state's youth was brimming with hope and aspiration and looking for a path which would bring success, satisfaction and happiness.
To channelise their energy in constructive and nation building activities, the department of youth services and sports has given focused attention to the development and upgradation of sports infrastructure in the state, he added.
The MA Stadium, Jammu is being upgraded to an international cricket stadium at a cost of Rs 42.17 crore and the work shall be completed by April, Malik said.
"It can now host national and international cricket matches. Bakshi Stadium, Srinagar has been upgraded as a FIFA compliant international football stadium at a cost of Rs 44 crore. It shall be completed by June 2019. It can host national and international football matches," he said.
Malik also appealed to members of civil society, political parties and leaders of all social, cultural, religious and other organisations in the state to contribute in building a prosperous Jammu and Kashmir, which, he said, would be a role model for other states.