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Mufti surprises one and all, appears in Lal Chowk, interacts with traders
3/31/2015 12:34:43 AM
Jehangir Rashid
Early Times Report

Srinagar, Mar 30: Chief Minister, Mufti Mohammad Sayeed took everybody by surprise as he appeared in the city centre and took stock of the water logging that has emerged following continuous rains in Kashmir on Saturday and Sunday.
In the morning, Mufti accompanied by Minister for Finance and Culture, Dr. Haseeb Drabu and Minister for Public Works Department, Syed Mohammad Altaf Bukhari visited the Lal Chowk area and met the traders whose shops were facing threat of inundation due to drainage failure following incessant rains in the area.
Minister of State for H&UDD Mohammad Ashraf Mir, besides Divisional Commissioner, Kashmir, Gazanfar Hussain, Deputy Commissioner Srinagar, Dr. Farooq Ahmad Lone and Chief Engineer I&FC, Kashmir Javed Jafar were also present on the occasion. The dewatering has since been completed and the waterlogged roads have been restored in the business hub of the city.
Interacting with the trading community, the chief minister said he has made on-the-spot assessment and the government will take all steps required to prevent water-logging following continuous rains. He said the government will also start the distribution of relief among and rehabilitation of the flood-affected people in a three-phased manner from next month.
"The traders who had insured stock have been compensated. However, for the small businessmen we have fixed separate slabs as for as compensation is concerned. They come under three categories of Rs 10 lakhs, Rs 5 lakhs and petty traders. We will compensate them and the process will start soon," said Mufti.
The Chief Minister said that he has taken an assessment particularly in terms of preparedness to face the emerging situation. Mufti who had air dashed to Srinagar yesterday following the heavy rains personally supervised the government's efforts throughout the night and directed setting up of camps at safe places for people of affected areas in case of emergency and if need be.
During the review meeting held last evening, the Chief Minister had issued instructions to press into service all de-watering pumps in Srinagar city to clear the inundated areas. Lal Chowk was also inundated yesterday, but after the dewatering pumps have been used uninterruptedly, the roads in and around the business hub have been cleared of water logging.
Some of the prominent businessmen of Kashmir were present in Lal Chowk when the chief minister arrived. These businessmen apprised Mufti of the problems being faced by them. They urged the government to put in place an effective mechanism so that the problem of water logging comes to an end in Lal Chowk.
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