Police on Saturday detained many civil contractors when they tried to march towards City Centre, Lal Chowk, after staging an anti-government demonstration at Press enclave here.
Under the banner of J&K Central Contractors Coordination Committee (JKCCCC), scores of contractors led by general secretary, Farooq Ahmad Dar, gathered at the Press Enclave and shouted anti-government slogans, according to a statement issued to KNS.
Carrying placards, the contractors were demanded release of outstanding bills worth Rs 300 crores. They alleged that government is totally ‘insensitive’ towards them. However, Police swooped over them (protesting contactors) after they tried to march towards Lal Chowk. At least six contactors, including Dar, were bundled in police vehicles while as the rest tried to nudge their way through in a scene which created complete chaos in the enclave and its vicinity.
Earlier, Dar flayed the authorities for withholding the astronomical amount of Rs 300 crores. He added that official apathy has not only worsened the contractors condition but led to halt of many developmental works owing to the paucity of funds in the treasuries here. Dar alleged that treasuries in Kashmir have been running dry from last 15 days. He added that the money withhold is being used for the election purposes while as the contractors have been left to run from pillar to post.
“Bills of hundreds of contractors working with different departments have not been cleared. The money is being drained out for the elections process,” Dar alleged adding that bills worth Rs 300 are pending with the government.
Dar accused Finance Minister, Abdul Rahim Rather for creating a financial crunch “just to keep financial commission of India in good humor.” “If our bills are not cleared at the earliest, all the developmental projects will come to a halt,” Dar cautioned.
He added despite completion of works certificate allotted to the contractors by the departments including Finance, Planning and Works in time, hundreds of bills are still pending clearance. Dar threatened that contractors would strike work if the outstanding bills are not cleared soon.