Villagers fume as vital stream diverted upstream

Villagers fume as vital stream diverted upstream
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BANDIPORA: Residents of Mader village in north Kashmir’s Bandipora district are fuming with anger as the only stream which they call their lifeline is running dry because of diversions upstream.
According to villagers, the Jinder Kaul, which originates uphill and irrigates many fields in its path has been diverted for irrigation purposes by villagers upstream leaving the Mader and other villages dry for the last one year.
The villagers said that they have visited administrative offices with their complaints but to no avail.
“Our paddy fields are dry, there is no water to plant saplings, the earth has dried out, the same issue last year damaged the crop in nearby Konan village but no one pays heed to us as we have been repeatedly visiting Executive Engineer Irrigation and Flood Control’s office,” an elderly villager Mohammad Afzal said.
Another resident said the stream was the lifeline for the village as there was no any other water source.
“God forbid if there is any fire incident in the village we don’t have water to douse of the flames,” he said.
They alleged the employees of the Irrigation and Flood Control department responsible for regulating water for irrigation were not performing their duties well.
Officials at the administrative office, however, said that there is no scarcity of water but the issue was prevalent at many places due to the strike called by the daily wagers.
Deputy Commissioner Bandipora said that he will talk to the Executive Engineer of the department and direct him to resolve the issue immediately.