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news details
Snow clearance work hampered in upper Budgam
Locals want MGNREGA funds be diverted for work
2/9/2019 11:41:47 PM
Early Times Report

Budgam, Feb 9: At a time when Government claims that most of the roads have been cleared of snow in Kashmir valley, people in upper parts of central Kashmir's Budgam allege that snow clearance is yet to be undertaken in most of the villages as machines and JCBs are not able to clear the snow. Locals are demanding that either snow cutting machines be send to their areas or roads be thrown open removed manually by local people using MG NREGA funds.
Details available with Early Times reveal that in most of the higher reaches snow clearance is yet to be undertaken as snow clearance machines have not been able to reach to these locations. The locations where such machines were send by the authorities, could not work as machines failed to clear the snow as snow depth at several places is even 4 feet or more.
"Snow clearance machine came to our area Nagbal Yusmarg but as depth of snow is 4 feet plus and volume very huge , the machines failed to clear the same. We need snow cutting machines to clear this huge volume or snow. If this is not available let people do it manually. It will serve two purposes , one small roads and link roads will get cleared and local youth will get some income also as most of the people in higher reaches of Kashmir are jobless. Let funds under NREGA be utilized for this work . Infact we took up the work with senior leaders of Charar e Sharief constituency like former Minister A R Rather, he too gave us assurance for the same "said Ghulam Mohammad Ahangar a social worker and former Sarpanch of Nagbal Yusmarg in Charar e Sharief constituency of Budgam. "People are facing acute hardships due to recent snowfall, the authorities on the other hand are involving such contractors for snow clearance work whose only job is to loot state exchequer in one way or the other. From last 2 days authorities did not clear Bonen -Batwodder- Kutbal road under PMGSY. The snow was cleared for namesake last year also. We appeal Chief Secretary J&K ,Deputy Commissioner Budgam and Chief Engineer PMGSY to intervene said a local resident Hilal Ahmad.
There were reports that many contractors whose services were availed by various Government agencies for snow clearance last year were allegedly preparing fake bills in association with the officials of R&B, PMGSY, Mechanical Engineering Department, Srinagar Municipal Corporation (SMC) and other line departments.
"This is an irony that in whole Kashmir valley there are only 3 Snow Cutting machines available with Government. One is in Gulmarg , another one in South Kashmir and one is in Srinagar I believe. As the volume of snow is huge , the traditional snow machines fitted with blades etc are not able to clear the snow. Huge snow is present on roads around Dodha Kathu , Mujparhri , Lanilab , Goggee Pathri , Bradi Pathri , Darwan and other areas of Budgam. I appeal Govt to utilize services of local people under NREGA instead and not wait for snow cutting machines. NREGA work will ensure employment guarantee to people and Govt must not look after physical asset creation as J&K's geography is altogether different than states like UP, Bihar or Rajasthan " said Dr Nazir Ahmad a social activist from Nagam Budgam. In Mujpathri Khansahib local residents also have similar complaints, they told Early Times that snow clearance machines could not clear the snow as the depth of snow in the area is almost 4 feet. "I appeal Govt especially DC Budgam, ACF Budga to allow locals to clear the lanes, and link roads under NREGA " said Tanha Majeed a local resident.
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