Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday made his first address to the nation following the momentous move by his government earlier in the week to scrap Section 370 pertaining to Jammu and Kashmir thereby integrating the state with India like never before, and also its bifurcation into two Union Territories - J&K and Ladakh.
"It's a new era for Jammu & Kashmir & Ladakh. From the bottom of my heart, I would want to congratulate the people of the nation."
"No one talked of the difficulties faced by the people of J&K and the youth because of Article 370 and 35A."
"There was never any discussion as to how Article 370 was adversely affecting the people of Jammu, Kashmir & Ladakh and it was surprising that no one was able to really tell how did the article benefit the people. "
"We have tried to bring a new work culture, transparency in J&K administration."
"J&K and Ladakh have the potential to be the biggest tourist hub in the world. There was a time when Kashmir was the favourite destination of Bollywood film-makers. I am confident that in the future even international films will be shot there."
"I also want to tell my countrymen that the concern of the people of Jammu & Kashmir and Ladakh is our concern as well. Their happiness, sorrow and suffering are no different from ours."
"The development of the people of Ladakh after the formation of the UT is the special responsibility of the government of India."
''Come. Let us all together build a new Jammu & Kashmir and new Ladakh with the new India."
"Every possible step will be undertaken that furthers ‘Ease of Living.’ It has been our constant endeavour to strengthen Panchayats in Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh. We will move with even greater speed to realise this commitment and empower local citizens.
"Our priority is the socio-economic development of Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh. It is vital these beautiful regions become centres of growth and the skills of the local youngsters are utilised effectively. There are ample opportunities in sports, tourism and culture."
"Now onwards, the people of Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh can avail of several developmental opportunities they were denied for decades! This includes access to better education, laws to protect the marginalised sections of society, a life of greater dignity for women."
" For decades, Articles 370 and 35-A encouraged separatism, terrorism, corruption and nepotism. There was no benefit to the common citizens. But, with the blessings of the people, a positive change has taken place."
"While addressing my fellow Indians today, I spoke at length about the new era of development in Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh. The entire country is with the people of these regions as they embark on the path to progress. Everything will be done to fulfil people’s aspirations."
Here is the video of PM Modi's address to the people of India.