Bijbehara: Unit holders at the Bijbehara industrial estate in Anantnag district are facing immense hardships with lack of steady power, pathetic road conditions and a perennial water crisis being some of their woes.
The maintenance of the estate had earlier been entrusted to the District Industries Centre (DIC), Anantnag, and now falls within the jurisdiction of the Small Scale Industries Development Corporation (SICOP).
The unit holders rue that despite the estate’s maintenance changing hands, their troubles have not come to an end.
A major issue at the estate, unit holders say, is the lack of essential power supply.
“We get no more than five hours of power supply a day, leaving our production badly affected,” a unit holder told Kashmir Reader, requesting not to be named.
He said that the unit holders have approached the authorities repeatedly to address the issue but nothing has been done so far.
“We sometimes are forced to curtail our man-power in the wake of the erratic power supply for production here is minimal but labour costs need to be paid in full,” another unit holder said.
This apart, the condition of the roads within the estate is pathetic, and no black topping has taken place in years now.
“Bad roads are of course an issue, but it’s somehow manageable. But lack of water supply cannot be managed. Are the unit holders, who need water for production, supposed to carry water in buckets?” asked another unit holder.
Recently, the stake holders say, water supply pipes have been laid within the estate but they are yet to be connected to the water supply network.
The unit holders allege that the authorities are hoodwinking most of them, although some favoured ones get all preferential attention.
The SICOP has been repairing the walls of units belonging to influential people while ignoring the plight of the rest of the estate.
Deputy General Manager (DGM), SICOP, Mohammad Muzaffar told Kashmir Reader that the estate had been only recently entrusted to the corporation.
“We have been taking extensive stock of the situation and the hardships faced by the unit holders,” the DGM said, adding that all the issues of the unit holders would be taken care of.
“It was the job of the DIC, and we had no say in this earlier. But now that we have been entrusted with the estate’s maintenance, we will make sure all outstanding issues are resolved in a time-bound manner,” Muzaffar told Kashmir Reader.
He added that an amount has been allocated and will shortly be transferred to the Power Development Department (PDD) to establish an uninterrupted power supply to the estate.
Unit holders, though, remain unimpressed, saying they have been told such things time and again.
“The DIC hoodwinked us with such tactics for years. We don’t have an iota of trust in such tactics. Hope is all we can do,” said a unit holder.