Union Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde arrived in Srinagar on Friday evening after visiting the international border in Jammu. Shinde had arrived in Jammu on Friday morning on a three-day visit to the state.
On the first leg, the home minister visited the border district of Poonch and inspected the trade facilitation centre at Chakan da Bagh, according to an official statement.
Elaborating on several measures being taken up to give necessary fillip to cross LoC trade, Shinde said steps are underway to enhance immigration of passengers and cross border trade through Chakan-Da-Bagh.
He said the government is determined to promote cross border trade with Pakistan with an objective 'to encourage amicable bonding with our neighbour'.
"This is a step forward in confidence building measures being initiated by India", he maintained. On this occasion, Cross LoC Trade Union president Pawan Anand apprised the union minister of problems being faced by the traders.
Responding to demands, the union home minister assured them that all their issues including landline telephone facilities to registered cross border traders, short visa in favour of traders, lifting of ban on coconut export, no article of third country be allowed for trade, articles of both parts of the state be given priority in trade would be looked into.
Shinde also went around various blocks of trade facilitation centre and immigration complex and reviewed facilities being provided for cross LoC trade.
Later, the union home minister visited Suchetgarh and inspected the octroi post on international border. He also inspected various units of the post and interacted with the Border Security Force commanders and jawans, the statement said.
Shinde, the statement said expressed satisfaction over the notable decline in infiltration graph and lauded the security forces for foiling the attempts of infiltration with firm determination and added vigour.
"We salute the strength and sincerity of our security forces who safeguard the nation without caring for their own comfort", he maintained.
Shinde also interacted with top brass of the BSF and got a detailed description about the security set-up in the region. The union home minister also addressed a Sainik Sammelan organised at the post and lauded the role of BSF in safe guarding the border.
Immediately after his arrival, Shinde had wide ranging consultations with state governor, N. N. Vohra on several important matters at a meeting held at Raj Bhavan, according to the official statement."During their hour long meeting, the governor and the union home minister discussed issues which related, interalia, to the ongoing pace of socio-economic development of the state, strengthening the functioning of Panchayats, elections to Panchayat samitis and urban local bodies, and matters relating to internal and external security management."