Over 100 families involved in sheep and cattle rearing in Newa Pulwama today alleged that some vested interests were trying to convert about 350 kanal of protected grazing land into a playfield in the area.
They said if these people succeeded in their “nefarious” designs, “it would cost our livelihoods and make our livestock starve.”
The residents of the area told Greater Kashmir that this plateau-shaped plot of land falls in the protected grazing land category, but still some people have allegedly been using their political influence to convert it into a playground.
The residents termed the proposal to convert the pastureland into playground as a shock, as they said that dozens of unemployed youth have raised loans from different institutions including JKEDI and Sheep Husbandry Department, and started sheep farms.
“We are shocked to see this protected grazing land is proposed to be converted into a playfield to please some people, who are believed to enjoy the political patronage,” the residents said, adding, this decision would ruin the business of dozens of families.
The inhabitants said that their livelihood was directly dependent on this land and any fiddling with this plot would devastate their livelihood.
“Near about five thousand sheep and hundreds of milch rearing cattle would die of starvation if the government and authorities concerned fail to protect this land,” said the residents.
The inhabitants said a delegation from the area informed deputy commissioner, Pulwama and conveyed him about the happening. “The DC assured us that none would snatch our livelihood and ensured no conversion would take place. But, still these people seem hell bent to convert it,” they said.