Depute central team to assess damage done to horticulture industry: PDP tells Manmohan

SRINAGAR: Opposition Peoples’ Democratic Party (PDP) Saturday urged Prime Minister of India, Manmohan Singh to depute a central team to assess the damage done to the horticulture industry in Jammu and Kashmir due to recent snowfall.
“My appeal to the Prime Minister is to depute a central team for assessment of losses to horticulture industry due to recent snowfall as was done in case of Maharashtra and some parts of Uttar Pradesh,” PDP president Mehbooba Mufti told reporters here.
Mehbooba said a compensation package should be worked out for the orchardists and farmers of Kashmir on the lines of UP and Maharashtra.
Taking a dig at the chief minister Omar Abdullah administration, she said her party had attached no hopes with the state government “which is functioning through tweets only”.
“The response of the state government to the snowfall has varied between cruel, insensitive and comic interludes,” she said.
Mehbooba said while the state government offered a helicopter to evacuate injured persons from avalanche hit Kulgam district, adequate efforts were not made to rescue a man who was trapped in a landslide for hours.
“Manzoor Ahmad Mir (who died in a landslide on Jammu-Srinagar Highway) called police and his family for help from his mobile phone. Between 1.00 pm and 7.00 pm, he could not be rescued though he was alive,” she claimed.
“Police came to the spot but could not rescue him in absence of proper training and equipment,” she added.
Mehbooba said her party had suspended all political and election related activities in order to reach out to the people of Kashmir who have suffered losses due to the snowfall and its aftermath.
“We had planned to visit the affected areas today but the tragedy caused by the government (killing of a youth at Sumbal in police firing yesterday) was used by the administration to advise us against any movement,” she added.

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