PDP holds state wide protests against 'administrative failure'

SRINAGAR: Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Saturday held state wide demonstrations blaming the government of failure to address people’s problems. Apart from the Srinagar and Jammu demonstrations were also held at all district headquarters and all major towns to press for redressal of pressing problems faced by people.

In Srinagar, the party took out a march from PDP headquarters to Lal Chowk. The march was led by the senior PDP leader Tariq Hameed Karra, district president Mohammad Ashraf Mir, and Molvi Imran Ansari. The party activists chanted slogans in Kashmiri like ‘Waliv Zalew Wein Prein Chaetgeer, Ye Gaw NCyuk Naya Kashmir (Take out the old lanterns, this is NC’s new Kashmir), Kanekh Daryaw, Kunukh Kashmir, Ye Gaw NCyuk Naya Kashmir (They sold rivers, they sold Kashmir; this is NC’s new Kashmir), Gatchan Power, Tchu Koshur Geer, Ye Gaw NCyuk Naya Kashmir (People are lost in power cuts, this is NC’s new Kashmir).

The protests focused on lack of electricity, and scarcity of PDS food grains, kerosene oil, LPG and drinking water.

The speakers castigated the government for pushing the entire Valley into complete darkness forcing the people to switch over to the ancient means of lightning.

Stating that while the authorities have even failed to stick to the ‘atrocious power schedule’, announced for the winters, the tariff has been increased five folds, over the last five years, the speakers pointed out, that in many cases bills have been inflated beyond reasonable limits with the result people have been unable to pay the tariff.

The speakers also pointed out that the government had with much fanfare announced the establishment of transformer banks, which,  “proved to be another hollow promise”.

“Even now people are forced to collect money to get the damaged transformers repaired. Due to the recent snowfall, at places, HT and LT wires, which have fallen down, have not been repaired posing serious threat to the human populace,” a PDP spokesman said.

Adding to the people’s woes, the speakers said, so many areas are still awaiting clearance of snow.

They said there is serious shortage of rice, flour at the Public Distribution System (PDS) outlets and there have been many instances where ration under the PDS going to black market.

Even, nothing came out, so far, about the 10 thousand quintal rice which went missing from an Awantipur godown few months back. “Fact of the matter is that such frauds are done by the corrupt employees in league with ruling party ministers,” leaders said.

The speakers said while the water charges were regularly collected from consumers, but in many areas, especially in villages, women are forced to fetch water from the sources, miles away from their homes. Even, at places, people are forced to melt snow to get drinking water.

The PDP leaders accused the government of institutionalising corruption in the state and making the institutions of probity systematically dysfunctional. They said there have been brazen cases of corruption like the Cricket Scam, PHE scam, Fake drug Scam, BOPEE scam etc., over the last five years, which have made the state poorer and the sitting ministers richer.

The leaders said though there have been many serious charges of corruption against the sitting ministers and the mysterious death Haji Yousuf, in 2011, at the chief minister’s residence expose the murky money dealings in the Abdullah family.

The party also alleged that the recruitment and selection processes have been subverted and there is no transparency and accountability in the system. The government, the speakers said, has put everything on sale which has also been responsible for the anger among the youth as they don’t get a fair play in the system. The government, instead of creating meaningful avenues for the welfare of the young population, has been on war with them as more than 10 thousand FIRs have been lodged against them, besides using every inhuman means to suppress their voices. The seriousness of the government, in tackling the menace of unemployment among the educated youth, can be gauged from the fact that it has recruited 400 retired people on hefty salaries.

In Jammu, the protest was led by the senior party leaders, S. Trilok Singh Bajwa, and Ved Mahajan, All the leaders along with two hundred workers were later detained and lodged in police lines Jammu.

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