Heavy snowfall block roads, inundates City

Irfan Rashid
SRINAGAR: As the Srinagar city continues to remain inundated due to continuous rain and snowfall leading to traffic gridlocks, the residents blamed Srinagar Municipal Corporation (SMC) for failing to install dewatering pumps on main roads which are causing inconvenience to public.
Almost all the interior roads were inundated while people found it difficult to cross the roads in different areas. In some areas of the city people used boots to cross the waterlogged roads.
The commuters in Srinagar expressed their disappointment over authorities for not improving the drainage system in Srinagar which has been worsening from last several years creating water over-flow on the main roads. “The drainage system here is worst; a slight rainfall submerges all the roads which lead to traffic jams for hours together. It seems this problem will continue in Kashmir for many years as one travels through Srinagar the problem in everywhere,” said Saaliq Dar, a shopkeeper.
The residents said that waterlogging completely blocks some roads and lanes making it impossible for people to walk. “People in Srinagar prefer to stay indoors in rains due to the problem of ailing drains and bad roads. The city is face of Kashmir and nothing is being done to improve its infrastructure,” said a private employee, SuhailKhadim.
The traders said that from more than a year they were continuously pleading authorities to repair the drainage in Lal Chowk area but nothing was done.
In the commercial hub and City’s nerve centre, Lal Chowk from Residency road to Regal Chowk and Polo view the condition is no better, the roads were filled with muddy water and drains were overflowing.
The condition is no better in areas like AmiraKadal, BadshahChowk and Jahangir Chowk where due to improper drainage system the people are facing inconvenience.
In addition to the city roads, the roads connecting the hospital are also submerged and the patients are suffering.
Hospitals including Bone & Joint (B&J) in Barzulla, SMHS (ShriMahrajaHari Singh) in Karan Nagar, Sher-I-Kashmir Institute of Medical Sciences( SKIMS) in Bemina, LD (Lal Ded) are in big trouble as the roads connecting hospitals and its compounds are waterlogged.
“Authorities can’t afford timely dewatering in this hospital, what we can expect them to do now,” said a patient at LD Hospital.
With people blaming defunct drains for frequent water logging, the situation is worst in low-lying areas of Srinagar like Mahjoor Nagar, Natipora and Nowgam where residents are up in arms against authorities for failing to solve the problem of water logging.
Meanwhile the unnecessary delay by the authorities to undertake repairs of dilapidated roads in the summer capital is causing immense inconvenience to commuters. Due to incessant rains, major roads including Exhibition Crossing, Solina, Rawalpora, Tengpora, Hyderpora, RangrethHumhama, LD Crossing and Sonwar have developed potholes hampering smooth flow of vehicular movement. The problem is compounded by accumulation of rain water on the damaged roads posing risk of accidents. Dilapidated condition of roads causes frequent traffic jams as motorists prefer to drive slowly to avoid damage to their cars.
Talking to Rising Kashmir, commissioner, SMC, GhulamNabiQasba said: “Despite heavy snowfall, we have installed 50 mobile dewatering pumps on all major points in the city and everything will be clear soon.”
The Met Office said the weather will improve after March 9. “Weather will remain mainly dry during the next 24 hours,” a meteorological department official said.
In Ladakh region, Leh town recorded the minimum temperature of minus 2.4 degrees and Kargil town was colder at minus 6.4 degrees Celsius. “The night temperature in Jammu city was 9.8 degrees Celsius”, the official added.



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