KATRA: On his first visit to Jammu and Kashmir since formation of new government here, Prime Minister Narendra Modi today invoked Atal Bihari Vajpayee and said 'Insaniyat, Kashmiriyat and Jamhooriat' will be path adopted for taking the state forward and promised to work shoulder-to-shoulder with the Mehbooba Mufti dispensation.
Modi said the Centre will work with the state government for changing the destiny of Jammu and Kashmir, fulfilling the aspirations of its people and taking it to "new heights".
"People of Jammu and Kashmir had enormous faith in Atal Bihari Vajpayee... Very few leaders commanded such respect...
He used to say 'Insaniyat (humanity), Kashmiriyat and Jamhooriyat (democracy)' are key to progress of Jammu and Kashmir. We have to take the state to new heights through these pillars," said Modi addressing a public meeting here after inaugurating the sports stadium.
"The dream of Vajpayee ji -- Insaniyat, Kashmiriyat and Jamuriyat -- we have filled with colours of 'sab ka saath sab ka vikas'. We have to take everybody together to fulfill those dreams.
"He (Vajpayee) used to say that if India has to progress then we will have to take along Jammu and Kashmir on the path of development, Modi said.
"Government of India with full force will move forward shoulder to shoulder and step by step with state government for changing the destiny of Jammu and Kashmir and fulfill the aspirations of people of the state", the Prime Minister said.
Modi, who also addressed the convocation of Shri Mata Vaishno Devi University and inaugurated a multi-speciality hospital, visited the state for the first time since PDP and BJP formed a fresh government after three months of wranglings.
The Prime Minister showered praise on Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti, saying he hoped that the formation of new government led by "young and energetic leadership will usher in a new era of development across the state." "Mehbooba ji does not talk about weather, but she always talks about the bridge, road and development. When leadership has such much of dedication towards development, then development becomes imminent," he added.
Referring to the dream of former Chief Minister Mufti Sayeed about all-round development of the state, Modi said the late PDP leader was not only concerned about development but he also wanted to reduce the wedge between Jammu and Srinagar.
"He (Sayeed) had in his mind to make Jammu and Kashmir a place which would be a role model for the entire country," he said while paying tributes to the late leader who headed PDP-BJP coalition government for 10 months before his sudden demise on January 7.
"I got an opportunity to hold three programmes at the foothills of Mata Vaishno Devi cave shrine. I got an opportunity to meet the young talent at the first programme of convocation of the Shrine University.
"Very few people in India know that Jammu and Kashmir is providing education to the students of various parts of the country in a homely atmosphere.. This is the strength of Jammu and Kashmir which gives it recognition across the country," Modi said.
This comment assumes significance against the backdrop of controversy surrounding NIT in Srinagar which recently witnessed clashes between outstation and local students over India's defeat against West Indies in semi final of T-20 World Cup.
The Prime Minister, who also inaugurated a stadium here, also talked about sports.
"When a youth from Kashmir shines across the country in the field of cricket, we feel proud... This sports complex will not only create good sportsmen but will create good sportsmanship as well," he said.
"India is hosting football under-17 World Cup championship in 2017. Although we are not good at football and are lagging behind, it will provide us an opportunity to revive and create an initiative for us," he said.
"We should create such an atmosphere through this game, so that world can see our composite nature and show the world the potential of our youth force," Modi said.
Referring to inauguration of a hospital here by him, Modi strongly batted for preventive healthcare and said sports is the best for that.
"The more we focus on preventive healthcare, the more we can maintain our distance from the hospital," he said.