Approaching Winter

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Apparently busy in the local body polls, the Governor’s administration is actually readying for the durbar move, its six months stint in Jammu. Officials have already issued the necessary orders to make the necessary arrangements in Jammu and the major job is that of the Director Estates who has to keep the housing ready for the officials who will move with the families, and the files.

This season, the pressures will be slightly more because the ongoing electoral process for the local bodies and the Panchayat’s has created insecurity in certain areas of state and will obviously send some new leaders to the political space. They will come to stake their rights in the dispensation that apparently is politically neutral.

If indications are to be taken very seriously, then the political process will witness some positive shift in coming days. Srinagar, given the situation, is not conducive for the politics right now and the political class will use the better environs of Jammu to walk the talk.

Given the political situation, Kashmir is apparently lacking an adequate say in the system. Here, the priorities are visible on counter-insurgency and a political process that has failed to get any political support, so far. In the ongoing polls, there are more seats left uncontested than the berths which will have some sort of contest. But the month of October will offer a much clearer scene on ground.

But the real major issue is that is the state government run by the governor adequately ready to face winter in Kashmir. Weather pointers indicate the temperatures will fall quite rapidly in coming days, slightly earlier than last year. The power situation has gradually started taking the cue and quite soon the load shedding would start.

While the adequate stocks have been sent to the Ladakh region, what is the status of the stocks of food grains and the fuels in regions within Kashmir which remain mostly disconnected from Srinagar for most of the winter?

These issues were normally being tackled by the lawmakers and the politicians but this time the existing political instability has enforced new priorities on ground zero.

Kashmir is the key tourist spot. Unlike the last few years, this season witnessed some kind of movement and improved footfalls. But what has been happening to the people on account of costly air tickets is a serious issue that the government has been side-stepping for last many years. This winger, the ticket costs will return to haunt Kashmir again. Winters wetness massive movement of the people to the plains to evade the frost and sub zero temperatures and to ensure a tension free situation, the administration will have to ensure the road connectively remains better.

The road is facing serious crisis because of the intervention for expansion between Banihal and Ramban. Even during the peak summers, it witnessed frequent closures because of massive land erosions. Governor’s administration will have to take the connectivity issue very seriously so that Kashmir does not actually land into a literal siege triggered by weather and inefficiency.

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