Over nine months ago, Lieutenant Governor of Jammu and Kashmir Manoj Sinha had promised with the delegation of Yuva Rajput Sabha that the government would seriously consider the demand of declaring the September 23rd, the birth anniversary of last Dogra ruler Maharaja Hari Singh a public holiday.
On September 15, the Lieutenant Governor during a meeting with the members of the Yuva Rajput Sabha and members of the civil society of Jammu announced a public holiday on September 23.
The Jammu and Kashmir Government has decided to declare Maharaja Hari Singh's birth anniversary a public holiday. A notification in this regard will be issued soon.
The announcement was made by Lieutenant Governor following his meeting with a delegation comprising prominent political leaders, members of the Yuva Rajput Sabha, and civil society members, including the head of the J&K transport union, at the Raj Bhavan today.
"The government has taken a decision to declare Maharaja Hari Singh birthday as a public holiday. Maharaja Hari Singh was a great educationist, progressive thinker, social reformer, and a towering man of ideas and ideals. The public holiday will be a fitting tribute to Maharaja Hari Singh Ji's rich legacy," the Lieutenant Governor observed.
Prominent political leaders including Member Parliament, Jugal Kishore Sharma; Former Dy CM, Dr Nirmal Singh; Devender Rana, Sat Sharma; Ajit Singh, President All J&K Transport Union; Rajan Singh, President, Yuva Rajput Sabha and members of Yuva Rajput Sabha were present on the occasion.
Four-member committee constituted to examine demand
Pertinently, on the directions of Lt Governor, a four-member committee was constituted by the UT administration earlier this year to examine the public demand regarding the holiday on the birth anniversary of Maharaja Hari Singh.
On January 9, 2022, representatives of Yuva Rajput Sabha called on the Lieutenant Governor, Manoj Sinha at Raj Bhawan.
The delegation discussed their long-pending demand for the declaration of a holiday on the birth anniversary of Maharaja Hari Singh on 23rd September.
The Lieutenant Governor gave a patient hearing to the delegation and immediately issued directions for the constitution of a Committee at the Government level over the said issue.
- On January 24, 2017, J&K Legislative Council unanimously passed a resolution to declare a holiday on the birth anniversary of Maharaja Hari Singh.
- On January 25, 2017 all BJP ministers and legislators announced to get cabinet approval within weeks as the party was part of the coalition with PDP in the erstwhile state of Jammu and Kashmir
- Amid the demand of the people, authorities moved a file to get approval from higher-ups on September 10, 2017, but the same was rejected by the then PDP-BJP government.
- On September 16, 2017, Vikramaditya Singh, grandson of Maharaja and MLC of PDP, wrote an open letter to the then Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti to declare a holiday on September 23.
- Vikramaditya Singh resigned as a member of the Legislative Assembly as well as from the primary membership of PDP on October 22, 2017, as a mark of protest against not declaring a holiday on Maharaja Hari Singh's birthday.
- On July 17, 2019, the Jammu Municipal Corporation (JMC) had also passed a resolution to declare a holiday on September 23.
- On January 9, 2022, Lieutenant Governor constituted a four-member committee to examine this demand.
- On September 15, 2022, LG Manoj Sinha announced a holiday on the birth anniversary of Maharaja Hari Singh.
Maharaja Hari Singh signed Instrument of Accession with Indian Union in 1947
Maharaja Hari Singh, the last Dogra ruler of the erstwhile princely state of Jammu and Kashmir had signed the Instrument of Accession with the Indian Union on October 26, 1947.
Accession Day is marked on October 26 to commemorate the anniversary of the day in 1947 when Maharaji Hari Singh, the Dogra ruler of Jammu and Kashmir, signed the Instrument of Accession. With this, the princely state of Jammu and Kashmir acceded to the 'Dominion of India'.