Ban on pre-paid SMSes to continue till MHA gives clearance: Pilot

Ban on pre-paid SMSes to continue till MHA gives clearance: Pilot

25 October 2012
The Daily Excelsior
Mohinder Verma

Jammu: Giving enough indications against immediate lifting of ban on pre-paid Short Message Services (SMSes) in Jammu and Kashmir, Union Minister of State for Communication and Information Technology, Sachin Pilot today said that ban will continue till the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) gives clearance as security issues are involved in the decision. In an informal interaction with the media-persons on the sidelines of a function at University of Jammu here this morning, Mr Pilot said, 'we must take appropriate measures in compliance with the directions of Ministry of Home Affairs. The ban on pre-paid SMSes was imposed in April 2010 on the directions of the MHA and the same cannot be lifted till the Home Ministry gives clearance as certain internal security issues are involved'. 'My Ministry only executed the wishes of the MHA. I hope that sometimes in future, we will be able to resolve the issue as the people of Jammu and Kashmir deserve to get pre-paid Short Message Services on the lines of people in other States of the country', he further said, adding 'in order to ensure that J&K people too avail the benefit of pre-paid SMSes, my Ministry is in constant touch not only with the Ministry of Home Affairs but also State Government'. 'After all internal security is the prime concern for us and there cannot be any compromise on the same', the Union MoS for Communication and Information Technology said. Responding to a question about much talked about reshuffle in Union Cabinet and chances of All India Congress Committee general secretary Rahul Gandhiís induction, Mr Pilot said, 'Cabinet reshuffle is the prerogative of the Prime Minister. Only Prime Minister has to decide who has to be inducted and who has to be given more responsibility'. 'As far as Rahul Gandhi is concerned, at present he is not interested in any post. He only wants to work for strengthening the party at grass root level and for the welfare of the people of all caste and creed in general and downtrodden sections in particular', the Union MoS said, adding 'his frequent visits in different corners of the country particularly in Dalit inhabited areas clearly indicates that for him strengthening party base and taking stock of peopleís grievances are prime concerns'. Mr Pilot further said, 'Rahul Gandhi is closely associated with common masses at the grass root level. He has developed emotional chord with the common masses particularly youth and he wants to further strengthen this chord before taking any responsibility in the United Progressive Alliance-II Government'. About his own prospects, the Union MoS for Communication and Information Technology said, 'I have been given the responsibility of MoS by the UPA Chairperson, Sonia Gandhi and Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh', adding 'I am happy with the responsibility given to me. I hope I will come up to the expectations of UPA Chairperson, Prime Minister and people of the country'. Responding to another query about the performance of UPA Government, he claimed, 'people are happy with the programme and policies of our Government. In UPA-I we had 156 Members of Parliament and in UPA-II the figure touched 209 and this clearly indicates that people want our Government to continue'. 'We have fulfilled the expectations of the people. Still one and half year is left with the Government and we will give our best to the people', Mr Pilot added. About Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) president Nitin Gadkari's alleged involvement in Maharashtra Irrigation Scam, the Union MoS said, 'as Mr Gadkari has himself stated that he is ready to face probe, any appropriate agency should be entrusted the task and if omissions and commissions are established law will take its own course of action'. Though on Robert Vadra Mr Pilot didnít give any clear reply yet on Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister, Virbhadra Singh he said, 'though Virbhadra Singh has already cleared his position yet no different parameters can be set in for investigations against any party. One set of rule is for everybody and let law take its own course'. In reply to a question on former Team Anna member Arvind Kejriwal, Mr Pilot said, 'politics doesnít mean always raising finger at others and leveling allegations. He has to repose faith in the probing agencies and if one has authentic proof he can go to the court', adding 'politics on negative agenda is not good and Kejriwal should understand this'.