When the torrential rain fell for five days in early September, it gave a clear indication that something unusual was about to happen. Instead of finding signs in it we ignored the message altogether. We all are witness to the consequence of our apathy.
If the positive steps were taken before the devastated flood hit the valley, there would have been few deaths and less damage to properties. Now that the worst is over the onus is on the state government. It should take necessary steps, urgently. For instance government should open flood channels, keep water boats at disposal so that our dynamic youngsters can use them in any eventuality and engage honest engineers to draft a new Master Plan.
According to the state governments survey report, at least 1.30 million families have been affected by the devastated flood and as many as 355000 standing buildings collapsed which include both private and government buildings. In all 5692 villages were affected. The government official's have also revealed that more than 260 people lost their lives of whom 30 are still missing.
There are reports that the state has suffered extensive economic loss worth 30000 crore. This is truly an immense loss for the people and also for the state government. Off course it will take a very long time to recover all the losses. However this is a time not only for recovering losses but for introspection as well.
The winter is looming over Kashmir. Early chill is sending shivers down our spine. People who lost their homes during the merciless September floods, this winter may be too cruel for them to survive.
As the election have been announced in the state all the political parties have gotten busy garnering votes from miserable Kashmiri people. Instead of giving they are again moving around with a begging bowl seeking alms in the shape of votes.
Ironically all parties blame each other for lack of work during their respective periods of governance. Interestingly they include who ruled over us as coalition partners for years.
I would like to tell every politician, every party and particularly to the chief minister of the state: Do not resort to cheap gimmicks but pool resources together in order to bring some respite to the suffering people.
In the mean time SMC and the state bureaucracy should not wait for new government but act on securing flood channels, river basins, lakes and also of small streams before politicians start allotting them to their cronies.
At the same time Non Governmental Organizations (NGO) ,our pro-freedom leaders and religious organisations should come forward to assist the people.
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