Bandipora tales: As winter approaches, many families in Gurez start migration to other places

Area remains cut from rest of Valley for six months, better to remain stationed in town, say locals

Sajid Raina

Gurez, Nov 05: As the winter is round the corner, many families living in this remote valley of north Kashmir Bandipora district have started migrating to other parts of the Kashmir region as Gurez witnesses harsh weather conditions for at least six months.

The Gurez valley which is located on the line of control witnesses’ heavy snowfall during the winter season and remains cut off from the rest of the valley and the outside world for more than six months due to the closure of Bandipora-Gurez road.

Razdan Pass, which is the gateway to this mountainous valley, records around 10-15 feet snow during winter months and becomes the main reason for the closure of the road, thereby making the area inaccessible during the harsh conditions of winter months.

The closure of the road coupled with harsh weather conditions forces most of the residents to migrate to other parts of the valley.

Locals of the area told news agency, that they can’t describe how they spent winter months in Gurez and these days most of the upper class residents of the area have started migrating from here to Bandipora and other parts of the valley.

Harsh weather conditions, shortage of essential commodities and the health emergency, the main reason for the average population to migrate from here, they said.

Abdul Jabar Shangru (58), a local resident, who have two residential houses, one each in Gurez and Bandipora’s Mantrigam village, said that we have started preparing migration to Mantrigam as the harsh winter is about to start following which the area will cut-off to the rest of valley as we lack the basic amenities during the season.

“As we are about to leave the residential house in Gurez ahead of harsh winter, we commend our livestock to our neighbors who will oversee them during the season,” he said.

“Yes it’s true the most of the villagers these days are preparing to migrate from here as the mountainous valley witnesses heavy snowfall during winter months thus leaving villagers in trouble,” Noor Mohammed(60), another resident said.

He said that during any medical emergencies mostly pregnancy cases, we witness huge difficulties here. “I remembered last year there was a pregnant lady here who was about to give birth to a child but we couldn’t take her to the hospital as the area was covered with a thick white blanket of snow.

It is pertinent to mention here that most of the areas of Bandipora including Mantrigam, Pazalpora, Bankoot, Lawdara, have majority of houses where people migrated from Gurez reside.

Earlier, Deputy Commissioner Bandipora Owais Ahmad, had informed through his tweet that fuel dumping for Gurez has been completed much before the deadline. 5.50 lac litres HSD has been adequately stored.

Power availability for Gurez will be almost double compared to last year, he informed through his tweet—(KNO)

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