New Delhi: After about a fortnight after the abrogation of Article 370, that gave special status to J&K, that saw a virtual lockdown in the region, the Ministry of Minority Affairs has planned a major initiative. (Also read: ‘People Unhappy in J&K,’ Says Ghulam Nabi)

Union Minister Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi said, “A team of senior officials, including the Secretary, will be visiting the area (Kashmir Valley) on August 27-28. The team will explore development possibilities — where schools, colleges, skill development centres can be opened.”

Naqvi said the team will also visit Jammu and Ladakh at a later date. On the Centre’s decision to revoke Article 370, Naqvi said, “It is (Narendra) Modi’s government. Everybody knows that in this government, the decision is made after a lot of thinking, but there is no question of a rethink after a decision has been made.”

He said his ministry was focusing on the two Union Territories of J&K and Ladakh. He pointed out that Central schemes will now be applicable and implementable in all areas of both J&K and Ladakh. Central schemes like the Pradhan Mantri Jan Vikas Karyakram (PMJVK) will now be taken to the region, he said.

“Now the ministry will be active in the region. We will make efforts to set up schools colleges, polytechnic, engineering colleges and hospitals,” the minister said.

“Because of Article 370, there were many things which we wanted to do, but could not do it. Now it can be done,” he said.

About Centre’s decision to revoke Article 370, Naqvi said, “It was welcomed in Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh. Article 370 has not given anything to the people there but has taken away from J-K and Ladakh. Over 100 laws on education, employment, human rights, minority or child rights, were not applicable there. So, the people realised that Article 370 was a big impediment in their path to development.”