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news details
Tourism Department fails to release sanitation funds
Poor laborers suffer, seek Governor's intervention
5/20/2018 10:56:26 PM
Saahil Suhail
Early Times Report
Anantnag, May 20: The Jammu and Kashmir Tourism Department has failed to release last year's sanitation funds to Urban Local Bodies Kashmir (ULBK) despite Finance Department's clear cut directions.
The poor laborers, who were hired by the ULBK last year for carrying out sanitation works during Shri Amarnath Ji Yatra, have now sought the intervention of Governor N N Vohra who is also the chairman of Shri Amarnath Ji Shrine board (SASB).
A group of laborers told Early Time that they brought this issue into the notice of Tourism Minister but it didn't yield any positive results yet.
"Minister assured us that he will get the funds released in two days but nothing happened," they alleged.
"Why we are being denied of our hard earned wages?" Laborers asked tourism department and Urban Local Bodies Kashmir officials.
They threatened to hit streets if their due wages aren't released within a week.
Urban Local Bodies Department officials claimed that they were already facing shortage of funds and now tourism department's refusal to release sanitation funds is aggregating the situation.
"On one side we being criticized for not carrying out effective sanitation drives but on the other hand we aren't being provided funds and facilities. Imagine the situation, time and again we appealing through official com
Amarnath Ji Yatra 2017!
unications to Tourism Department to release the money which we owe to poor laborers and suppliers who supplied equipments (Tools and Plants), disinfectants and other material during the Shri Amarnath Ji Yatra last year," an officer posted in South Kashmir said.
He said that they were told to hire extra laborers and procure sanitation equipments (Tools and Plants), disinfectants and other material for keeping Shri Amarnath Ji Yatra route from Qazigund to holy cave neat and clean but now tourism department has withheld the funds released by the Finance Department.
He said that Urban Local Bodies Department doesn't have enough funds out of which it could meat out the last year's expenditure of Shri Amarnath Ji Yatra.
An official communication between Finance and Tourism department establishes the fact that later has withheld the funds.
Finance Department letter vide No. FD-VII-20(8)3452/99-98-III dated 30-03-2018, directs Commissioner Secretary Tourism Department to settle the claim of Urban Local Bodies Department as a 'first charge' out of the budget 2018-19.
The letters reads that Finance Department has already released the 50% of 2018-19 budget to the tourism department.
Earlier in this week, Jammu and Kashmir Tourism Minister Mufti Tassaduq Hussain, in a meeting held at Pahalgam, had assured that he will get the funds released.
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