Jhelum Bank Evacuees Hold Protest For Rehabilitation

SRINAGAR — Several families evacuated from the banks of Jhelum a decade ago Saturday held a protest here seeking rehabilitation.

The protestors assembled under the banner of Jhelum River House Rehabilitation Union at Press Enclave and raised slogans.

The affected families, who were putting up along the banks of the river between the Deputy Commissioner’s office and Fateh Kadal, said that they were asked to evacuate with the promise that within three days they would be allotted land by the government for construction of their houses, according to media reports.

“It was in 2012 that our houses were dismantled by the authorities. It has been more than six years now and our files are still eating dust in the government offices,” union president Ghulam Mohi-ud-din was quoted as saying.

He said that the government was ignoring their plight despite its own orders for their rehabilitation for which all the formalities have already been completed.

“Presently, 120 families are suffering, living in rented accommodations. All the affected families work as labourers to earn their livelihood and cannot afford to buy houses on their own,” he said.

“The process (of rehabilitation) was initiated in 2008 with the selection of 120 families who were to be shifted from both sides of Jhelum River. In 2012 our sheds were demolished and 120 families were given order slips for rehabilitation,” said Bilal Ahmed Rah, vice president of the union.

The protesters appealed to Governor Satya Pal Malik to look into the matter and direct the concerned authorities to expedite the process of their rehabilitation forthwith.

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