‘Forgotten Kashmir villages craving for development’

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Ishtyaq Ahmad

Srinagar, Jun 29: The shamble narrow roads, old structures, open drains, damaged electricity poles and wires depict the dismal picture of several villages of Kashmir.
Soibugh and Wadwun villages have been the birth place of some well known personalities. These two villages have a total populace of 20,000 are adjacent to each other in the Budgam district of central Kashmir and are located with a distance of just 15-kms from the Srinagar city.
The locals claim that these villages continue to suffer and are being discriminated by the government.
The residents said the twin villages have also produced top scientists, doctors and intellectuals. “Despite that we continue to suffer,” Mohammad Syed, a local resident said.
Similarly, there are two beautiful villages Bakora Dignibal of Ganderbal district- which craves for basic amenities in this modern age of globalization.
The absence of basic amenities, including electricity, potable water, health centre and road connectivity, have added to their woe. The residents of Bakora Dignibal claimed that their children were not able to study properly under the candle light. “It pays costly to our children as they have developed many diseases owing to study under the candle light or firewood,” they complained.
The residents use wood for lighting their houses and cook their meals.
Here does not end the problems facing residents owing to absence of electricity.
The village sans the tap water supply and the residents claim they consume the contaminated stream water flowing adjacent to the village.
“Majority of the villagers have developed various water borne diseases due to consumption of contaminated water. Government has failed to supply us tap water,” they claimed.
This village is also without any primary health care centre and the inhabitants have to go 20-kilometres to the hospital at Ganderbal town to see the doctor.
“A couple of months ago, when a female fell ill, we could not rushed her to the hospital on time and she died on the way to the hospital,” they said.
The local populace of this village is entirely dependent on sheep rearing, but there is no veterinary centre in the village.
The conditions of roads in this village are appalling and it seems the road has never been macadamized since its existence.
The residents have to walk on feet over 8-kilometres to take a bus to reach their destinations.
Similarly, the villages in Rajpora constituency represented by PDP leader, and former finance minister Haseeb Drabu too crave for basic amenities.
Inhabitants of the village blame successive regimes for the indifference towards the hamlet.
“It seems that government has forgotten several villages. Despite living in the 21st century, we are without basic amenities. There is often problem of water shortage and we face electricity problem too,” they said.
The villages in Bijbehara constituency represented by Abdul Rehman Veeri narrate the same tale. There are a lot of villages, which are without basic facilities. (KNS)