Locals say that the authorities had promised them tap water through a scheme, which seems a total waste.
PULWAMA (J&K) —
Amid the ever-increasing winter chill in the valley of Kashmir, the people in its remote areas are facing a lot of hardships due to the absence of basic amenities. In one such village of southern Kashmir, people have been craving for potable water for a fortnight now.
The village Draklaran Abhama, linked to Rajpora tehsil in Pulwama district, has been facing frequent scarcity of drinking water from the last month and the last fortnight has been especially gloomy.
“We are facing acute shortage of drinking water. Our womenfolk have to visit nearby areas kilometres away in order to fetch potable water in pots. This is a daily humiliation, even after the authorities had promised us tap water through a scheme, which seems a total waste,” Haji Ab Rashid Magray, a local resident says.
A former employee of the concerned Public Health Engineering (PHE) Department, which has now been renamed as Jal Shakti Department, Ali Mohammad Khanday said, “Our area is receiving potable water under a scheme which was unveiled some 40 years ago. The central water tank, laid under the scheme, was thrown into a Nullah (steep narrow valley) with our village being some 50 feet above. Also, the pipes, which were laid decades ago, are narrow and have been filled with silt.”
“There are approximately 500 households which are provided potable water through this scheme, but the problem is that only some 200 households get the water each day,” he alleges.
The villagers said that they put forth their problems with government officials when they visited the area under Back To Village program, but to no avail. “Even the DDC candidates assured to solve the problem but it seems that we have been cheated,” a local says.
When contacted by Digpu News, Ishfaq Ahmad, AEE Pulwama, said, “This is a hilly area and quite far (30 km) from district headquarters, so we are not in a position to send water tankers to the area.”
He further added, “The freezing temperature is what causes the problems. Typically, the pipes begin to freeze when the Chillai-Kalan sets in with minus temperature. Having said that, our employees are consistently working to ensure the supply of potable water.”
The official claimed that there are only 40 households which are facing the problem due to low water pressure and freezing temperature, but assured that the Department is working to resolve the problem.
This story is part of an exclusive news series and is copyright protected.