Mirwaiz criticises govt for 'callous approach on flood threat'

KT NEWS SERVICE. Dated: 6/15/2019 12:32:12 PM

SRINAGAR, June 14: Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, chairman Hurriyat Conference (M) today criticised what he describdd as callous and lackadaisical approach of government towards the issues especially threat of floods.
He said just two days of rainfall in the Valley punctures the all claims of the administration as the flood threat looms large across the region which brings back the haunting memories of deadly deluge of 2014.
Addressing the Friday gathering at the historic Jamia Masjid here, Mirwaiz said," All the successive regimes and administrations made tall claims of framing a foolproof flood prevention plan but all remained confined to lip servicing only. In today’s age of science and technology, the present administration does not even come with any concrete plan or any use of technology to deal with the flood threat which is quite ironical."
He added that Jehlum flood channel has an absorption capacity of just 4000 cusecs due to siltation. "If proper dredging is done under a plan, the holding capacity can increase to more than 30000 cusecs. The ill-conceived plans of dredging was left midway," he said.
Mirwaiz said ironically not even a single flood spill channel was constructed by any of the previous regimes let alone the present administration. He said despite knowing the fact that Kashmir was vulnerable to rainfall and rise in water level due to its topography and weather conditions, the successive regimes gave illegal permissions to the hotels and other illegal constructions on the banks of flood channels and also on the banks of river Jehlum.
"Major flood channels that include Gilsar, Khushal Sar, Anchar, Wular and Brari Nambal have more or less vanished and there is a mushrooming growth of illegal constructions while as successive regimes acted as mute spectators making Kashmir more vulnerable to catastrophe," he said.
Mirwaiz said while all the previous regimes are too held responsible for their failures, people of Kashmir themselves are also to be blamed. He said," We also need to introspect and identify our own mistakes. At many places locals have illegally occupied government land, streams, river banks, and the corners at flood-spill channels and constructed hotels, houses, mosques, Darsgahs, and even graveyards, etc adding to their own miseries during rains," he said.
Mirwaiz asked the administration to come up with a modernized flood prevention plan and to give special attention to dredging and opening of flood channels so that flood like the situation is does not occur with every spell of rainfall.
Meanwhile, Mirwaiz paid rich tributes to veteran journalist and writer Syed Shujaat Bukhari, who was killed along with his two guards on June 14, 2018 stating that Bukhari was a bold and brave journalist besides a great sympathizer of Kashmiri people and a good human being, who was snatched from Kashmiris during Iftaar time outside his office. Mirwaiz paid for the highest standards in Janah for the deceased Bukhari.



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