SRINAGAR: More than a year after the demise of former chief minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed, most of the decisions taken by him, including the ones he took during the initial days of his reign, have not been implemented.
Among the decisions, Sayeed had asked to form a tourism policy for Jammu and Kashmir, to construct a footbridge between the historic Khanqah-e-Moula and Pathar Masjid (mosque) in downtown Srinagar, to make underground cabling of electric wires, and to provide uninterrupted power supply to residents living close to the Jamia Masjid in Srinagar. He had also asked for proposals for construction of a residential colony in a Public-Private-Partnership (PPP) mode.
None of these projects has been realised, despite her daughter Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti having given directions to compile all his father’s decisions in one file. A top IAS officer in the CM’s secretariat told Kashmir Reader that an officer was assigned the task to compile directions given by late Mufti Muhammad Sayeed to all the departments.
The IAS officer said that in a series of meetings presided over by the CM herself, instructions were given to heads of many departments to execute the decisions her father had taken.
“Regarding the formation of tourism policy, suggestions were sought from stakeholders but it has not been completed yet. Footbridge in old city (downtown) cannot be constructed because it violates many laws. The government had sought proposals for constructing a new residential colony but it could not get even one,” the officer said.
Another top-level officer told Kashmir Reader that decisions which were contrary to many laws have been delved upon to find a legal way to implement them.
In November 2015, two months before Sayeed’s death, he had convinced business tycoon Anil Ambani to set-up a 1,000-seater call centre in Jammu and Kashmir in two phases, to provide jobs to 3,000 youth. Insiders in the government said that the plan was not pursued by the current government.
Mufti’s close aide, who has been a senior minister in both Sayeed’s and Mehbooba’s cabinet, told Kashmir Reader that “seriousness, energy and zeal which used to be at late Mufti sahab’s time has died. That is the main reason why the decision file is gathering dust on shelves.”
“Mufti sahab was Mufti sahab. No one can replace him. His personality had many layers,” the minister said.
Senior PDP leader and Revenue Minister Abdul Rahman Veeri told Kashmir Reader that it was true that decisions taken by late Mufti Sayeed have not been implemented, “but the government is committed to implement them soon.”
When asked the reasons why the decisions have not been implemented, Veeri said, “The situation in the valley last year changed the game. But now we have again started working on them. Soon they will be implemented.”