Local initiatives give succour to stranded truckers on highway

Greater Kashmir

Trilok Singh, 50, a trucker from Punjab is stranded on the Srinagar-Jammu National Highway at Qazigund in south Kashmir’s Anantnag district for the past ten days.

The highway which is the only arterial route connecting Kashmir to the outside still remains closed for traffic due to heavy snowfall witnessed early this month.

“I arrived here on January 3 with a truckload of essential goods. However, as I was about to leave, it started snowing heavily and since then I am stuck here,” said Singh.

He said, initially, they managed to arrange eatables on their own but soon they ran short of money.

“We are thankful to the people in general and the ‘Syed U Sadat Foundation, Anantnag (a local trust) in particular, who provided us packed food items, rice, floor, pulses, oil, salt and spices,” Singh said.

Another trucker Virender Kumar, 47, also from Punjab has been highly moved by the gesture of the trust. “They not only provided us eatables, but took out phone numbers and assured us of every possible help,” he said.

Ram Prasad, 42 of Bathinda, Punjab said that people living around gave them blankets, warm clothes, and Kangris (firepots). “The hospitality of the locals is unmatched,” Prasad said.

Aashiq Hussain Shah, a member of the trust said that they ensured the food packets reach those who had yet to receive them from the district administration. “We worked in coordination with the district administration to ensure it reaches to the deserving lot first,” said Shah.

He said the trust is committed to serving humanity as per the principles of Islam.

The trust based in Malkhnag locality of old town Anantnag has been doing social services since its formation in eighties. It has been providing livelihood to the widows, orphans, poor and destitute besides doing rescue, relief and rehabilitation work during calamities.

The trust received lot of appreciation all over the valley for its work during lockdown triggered by Covis-19 pandemic.