Journey to border town Karnah not a cake walk

Kashmir Wire

If you want to visit border town Karnah in frontier district of Kupwara, think twice because the journey may not be a cake walk for you more so due to security reasons cited by authorities.

A visitor is required to undergo a hectic process to seek permission from the district authorities to visit this town around 175 Kms from Srinagar. Even for relatives living in Kupwara or elsewhere or those who have been married in Karnah the permission to visit the town is mandatory.

“In a written application to district superintendent of police a visitor has to state the purpose of the visit and also duration of his stay in the border town. His application is scrutinized and then he is given a written permission to go ahead,” Riyaz Ahmad, a potential visitor told Kashmir Wire.

“The permission can take even more than a day depending on the nature of purpose and duration of stay. And if the concerned officer is out of station a visitor has to wait till he resumes his duty,” he added.

Ahmad said to make the matters worse the visitor has to submit photocopies of his permission to security personnel deployed at Chowkibal en-route Karnah and then at Sadhna top and finally at police station Karnah.

Even the people desirous of visiting their kins in Karnah have to undergo the cumbersome process to see them.

“A relative or visitor seeking to visit villages other than tehsil headquarter Karnah needs to submit the permission at Sub divisional magistrate’s office at Karnah or the army brigade and obtain a fresh permission to visit the particular village or villages,”  said Irshad Ahmad, a Chamkote village resident in Karnah.

It may be recalled that last year, relatives failed to attend the funeral of a woman in Tanghdar after they were allegedly denied the permission by authorities in Kupwara. Residents of Keran, a border town, which is part of Karnah assembly constituency, regretted they have to seek permission to visit local MLA in Karnah.

Keran is not too far from Karnah and is part of the Karnah Assembly constituency but sadly we have to seek permission to visit the MLA or the town,” said Nasim Ahmad, a Keran resident.

Keran border town near the LoC is around 160 Kms from Srinagar.

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