Violence erupted in Chadoora area of central Kashmir’s Budgam district after government starts work on a water supply scheme over Doodh Ganga River, drawing intense opposition from locals. Witnesses told GNS that the officials of Economic Reconstruction Agency (ERA) along with police and CRPF and 36 inch pipes today morning arrived at the spot where work on the scheme would be started. However the locals at Madmal village attempted to stop the officials and staged protests. The police and CRPF resorted to baton charge and teargas shelling in a bid to disperse the protesters but they offered stiff resistance and also pelted stones on them. The ensuing clashes resulted in injuries to several persons including a woman identified as Firdousa wife of Muhamad Shafi. As soon as the news about the starting of work on the scheme spread in Chadoora Town and its adjoining villages, the residents hit the streets and shopkeepers closed their shops as a mark of protest. In the meanwhile, the authorities deployed government forces in the Chadoora Town and other villages to ensure smooth work on the water supply scheme. The locals have been resenting the work on the irrigation scheme as they claim it would deprive them of drinking water supply and apprehend “a major catastrophe to the population”. They claimed that the administration put down their proposal of alternate water sources at Haji Gund. “We had made few suggestions for the administration where the need could have been meted out but they paid no heed to it,” they said. “If the administration goes on with the proposal which they claim will benefit the people what answer did they have when the requirement is six-hundred cusec litres while they will be able to generate only 245 cusec litres from the scheme”. Pertinent to mention here that left with only ten kilometers to work out, the ERA has already completed the scheme upto Chadoora running across Nawhar to Kralpora.
2015 Kashmir Despatch