Gurdwara land holds up four-lane highway project

Gurdwara land holds up four-lane highway project

‘We will dismantle it by our own when govt provides alternative land’

SRINAGAR: Although the four lane Parimpora-Narbal (7 km) stretch on Srinagar-Muzaffarabad highway is complete, and has been thrown open for traffic, a small portion near Gurdwara Singh Sahab at Mustafaabad leaves the traffic choked.
Records suggest that authorities have failed to acquire land around the Gurudwara and uncertainty surrounds the completion of the project.
The work on project started in 2007 and put commuters to inconvenience for years as the road connects several district headquarters in the northwest of the valley to Srinagar. “But the lone hurdle in taking maximum advantage of four lanes causes massive traffic jams. It causes accidents and have taken the lives of many people because it causes accidents,” said Mohammad Aslam Dar, a resident of HMT area.
Authorities have said several times that Sikh community residing there is not supportive in dismantling the building block of Gurdwara and thus create a hurdle in completing the work.
However, the Sikh community told Kashmir Reader, “We are ready to dismantle the Gurdwara and we have many a times told the authorities to provide us land where we can construct the new Gurdwara and then dismantle the structures already constructed here.”
They said that the authorities had provided them land and also signed the handover-takeover documents, but on the very next day when the Sikh community started work on the land, the owner got a stay order and stopped the work.
The order copy for the land acquisition reads: “we the undersigned have respectively handed over and taken over the possession of land measuring 07 marlas under survey no 413 and 415 situated in estate zainakote on 26-12-16 in pursuance of government notification no 126-Rev (LAK) of 2016 dated 20-10-16 on the subject”.
“Despite the order, the land owner objected to the government order claiming that the government had not consulted him,” said Baldev Singh, president Gurdwara committee in HMT.
Baldev added that they are 200 percent ready to dismantle the Gurdwara if the authorities provide land for the rehabilitation.
“We will dismantle it by our own and will shift the religious books by our own on the very day they provide us land,” he added.
The issue was also been brought in the notice of Divisional Commissioner three months ago when he headed a meeting to discuss the issue. He pressed the authorities to bring an end to the problem within a short period of time, but months have passed without any progress. “They rather blame us for creating the hurdle in completing the project,” Baldev added.

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