Snow, rains throw life out of gear in Srinagar
File Photo

Snow, rains throw life out of gear in Srinagar

Incessant rains amid intermittent snowfall caused water-logging in several areas of the summer capital even as the ongoing strike by the Srinagar municipal corporation (SMC) sweepers severely affected dewatering and garbage collection.

Incessant rains amid intermittent snowfall caused water-logging in several areas of the summer capital even as the ongoing strike by the Srinagar municipal corporation (SMC) sweepers severely affected dewatering and garbage collection. 

Following snow and rains from early morning, several areas including Residency Road, MA Road, Dalgate, Jawahar Nagar, Rambagh, Hyderpora, Nowgam and its adjacent roads were water-logged. The problem was compounded by defunct drainage system in these localities.  

Dewatering was severely affected as the SMC employees continued their strike on the second day. Garbage mounds which accumulated on roads, from past two days, hampered smooth vehicular movement.  The protesting employees of SMC are demanding resolution to their demands including departmental promotions and disbursing salary of the consolidated employees from internal resources.

The SMC employees had earlier also observed four day strike to press for their demands last month. However, they had agreed to defer the strike after authorities had assured them of resolving their issues shortly.

"It was a cold response from the authorities at SMC administrative department that forced us to resume strike from February 5. Nothing on ground has been done with regard to meeting our demands," said a group of protesting employees, camping at SMC headquarters.

Mounds of stinking and spreading garbage have piled up in many areas in absence of sanitation work.

Srinagar city has a population of 1.4 million and produces up to 450 metric tons of waste every day which is collected by SMC Safai Karamcharies and shifted to Achan garbage dump. According to estimates, 900 metric tons of garbage has piled up in the summer capital.

On Wednesday, mounds of garbage could be seen piled up across Srinagar, including in Lal Chowk, Residency Road, Jehangir Chowk, Batamaloo, Maisuma, Magarmal Bagh, Chanapora, Rambagh, Dalgate, Khanyar, Rajouri Kadal, Jawahar Nagar, Mehjoor Nagar and in other municipal wards. The residents and shopkeepers within SMC limits expressed their resentment against strike by the SMC employees. 

SMC chief sanitation officer Muhammad Akbar Sofi admitted that sanitation and dewatering process remained suspended due to strike. "Dewatering could not take place due to ongoing strike. This has hit our sanitation measures," he said adding "however, the matter is being resolved between protesting employees and administrative department," 

Chairman SMC coordination committee Muhammad Maqbool Malik said work would be resumed as top officials at SMC administrative department have "agreed to fulfill our demands.

"The meeting between SMC coordination committee and officials of administrative department took place on Thursday afternoon. They agreed to issue formal orders regarding our issues related to departmental promotions," he said.

He claimed that demand about disbursing of monthly salaries of consolidated employees from internal resources have also been agreed to. "Now, we have unanimously decided to call off the strike," Malik said.  

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