National Conference (NC) Wednesday expressed dismay over the paucity of essentials in Kashmir saying that the administration seems to have turned a blind eye to the woes of the people.
In a joint statement issued here, senior NC leader Abdul Rahim Rather and NC Women’s Wing President ShameemaFirdous said that there was a crisis-like situation in Kashmir due to non-availability of basic essentials and the administration had failed to live up to its obligation of ensuring people all basic civic amenities and essentials. The statement quoted the NC leaders as saying that the curtailment of monthly ration to APL and BPL families had compounded the woes of people across J&K in general and people of Kashmir in particular due to the ongoing harsh winter season.
“The administration has also failed to have an anticipatory price control mechanism in its strategy to deal with the exorbitant price rise during the winter months. The absence of administration on the ground has emboldened the willfulness of traders and black marketers,” the joint statement of NC quoted Rather and Firdous as having said.
“Unfortunately, the flying squads of the Department of Food, Civil Supplies and Consumer Affairs are also not visible on the ground. The undergoing inflation of food, vegetables, and other items has inadvertently hit the pockets of the lower-middle class and middle class evenly,” they said in the statement. “We expect the administration to wake up from the slumber and ensure that people don’t have to suffer anymore. It is the primary duty of the administration to check price rise. In addition to that the divisional and the district administration should ensure sufficient stocks of all essentials including LPG and kerosene oil at all district headquarters. Special teams should be deputed to snowbound far-flung areas across Kashmir division to review the stock situation there.”
Drawing the attention of the administration towards the plight of people due to the prolonged and unscheduled power cuts, the NC leaders said that the power infrastructure which was disturbed due to weather vagary continues to be in shambles at various places, particularly in far-flung areas of north, central and south Kashmir.
“We had made repeated pleas to the administration to come up with a transformer bank at all district headquarters so that people don’t have to suffer on account of inordinate delays in the restoration of their defunct transformers during winter months. However, the demand was met with cold shoulders,” the NC leaders said in the joint statement. “There are areas in the upper reaches including central Kashmir Kandi belt where entire localities and hamlets are still reeling under darkness. Local district administration seems to have turned volte face to their woes. An early restoration of the electricity in the far-flung areas would also be appreciated. We anticipate an early action by divisional administration in this regard.”
The NC leaders also called for an audit of the primary, secondary and tertiary healthcare centers across Kashmir division to investigate into the complaints about the absence of medics and other paramedical staff from their duties.
“We have been receiving complaints that water filtration and pump stations in rural areas have also been left unmanned. In addition to that the slush that has accumulated at such stations needs to be removed as soon as possible to ensure steady supply of water to the surrounding catchment areas,” they said in the statement.
Rather and Firdous also impressed upon the divisional administration to ensure speedy disbursement of enhanced compensation to snowfall-affected people on immediate basis.