Restore all traditional flood channels to prevent threats: Mirwaiz tells Govt

ANH Desk

Members of Sikh community show up at Jamia Masjid to listen to Friday speech of chief cleric

Srinagar, June 15 : Censoring all the previous regimes, the Hurriyat Conference (M) chairman Mirwaiz Umar Farooq on Friday asked people to go for a mass introspection to remove all illegal constructions on river banks and streams across Kashmir stating that government must also restore all the traditional flood spill channels to flood threat doesn’t loom large after every two days of rain.

While addressing the massive Friday fathering at the historic Jamia Masjid here, the Mirwaiz said that just two days of rainfall in the Valley punctures the all claims of the administration as the flood threat looms large across the region which brings back the haunting memories of deadly deluge of 2014.

“It was so unfortunate that all the successive regimes and administrations made tall claims of framing a fool proof flood prevention plan but all remained confined to lip servicing only. He said in the today’s age of science and technology, the present administration doesn’t even have any concrete plan.

“River Jehlum had an absorption capacity of 40,000 cusecs of water which squeezed to just 4000 cusecs. This happed due to ill conceived plans of dredging that was left midway, and the blockade and encroachment of all the erstwhile flood channels that used to flush out the waters of Jehlum in times of flood threats,” said Mirwaiz. Mirwaiz said that ironically not even a single flood spill channel was constructed by the any of the previous regimes let alone the present administration.

“Despite knowing the fact that Kashmir was vulnerable to rainfall due to its topography and weather conditions, the successive regimes gave illegal permissions to the hotels and other illegal constructions on the banks of flood channels and also on the banks of river Jehlum,” he said. “Khushal Sar, Anchar, Wular and Brari Nambal, there is a mushrooming growth of illegal constructions while as successive regimes acted as mute spectators making Kashmir more vulnerable to catastrophe.”

Mirwaiz said that while as all the previous regimes are being held for their failures in coming up with any concrete flood prevention plan, people of Kashmir also need to introspect and identity their mistakes. Mirwaiz said that locals have illegally occupied government land, streams, river banks, and the corners at flood-spill channels and constructed hotels, houses, masjids, Darsgahs, etc making it difficult for government to deal with the floods.

Mirwaiz said that due to the illegal constructions on government land by none other than the people of Kashmir, major roads have squeezed making it difficult for the pedestrians to walk on. Mirwaiz asked the administration to coming up with a modernized flood prevention plan and to give special attention to dredging and opening of flood channels so that flood like situation are doesn’t occur with every spell of rainfall. He also asked government to remove the encroachments on traditional flood spill channels so that Kashmir doesn’t come on the brink of flood threat just after every two days of rainfall.

Meanwhile, in a rare sight, members from the Sikh community were also spotted at the Jamia Masjid listening to the speech of Mirwaiz. “A few members of Sikh Community also showed up at the grand masjid to listen to the Friday speech of Mirwaiz,” eye-witnesses told.(with KNO inputs)

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