As freak snowfalls and unusually inclement weather close the Srinagar Jammu highway, there will naturally be a shortage of essential products, foodstuffs, edibles and consumables. This condition might tempt some to take recourse to hoarding and black marketing which will create and compound miseries for the people. This temptation, for whosoever it arises, is bad, immoral and unethical. It must be resisted and nipped in the bud. If, however, it is done, it will., among other things, lead to inflation which will hit hard especially the pockets of the poor and the vulnerable. It is these segments of society that we must accord priority to and think of especially during and under times of duress. Black marketing and hoarding are intrinsically immoral so much so that our religion, Islam, forbids both in the strongest terms possible. So, these odious practices must not be taken recourse to. Period. However, scarcity of essential items also raises a broader issue and point. In the times of yore, when communication and transportation of all sorts and kinds was not as advanced as it is, people in Kashmir would not face the same problem with the same intensity. They were, in their own ways self sufficient. But, with economic growth and its percolation has come complacency. We are more and more dependent on almost everything on imports. This is the reason why there is an almost crisis like situation or condition whenever the Srinagar Jammu Highway gets closed for an extended period. So, the resolution to the problem is, to an extent, in our own hands. We must revisit the past and imbibe in us some of the practices that our ancestors did when under similar conditions. These would include growing vegetables in gardens, drying vegetables for winter and then using these as food most of time and be self sufficient in terms of poultry and what have you. If we do imbibe these practices then these will spare us from a lot of grief. But, this cannot and should not mean condoning or accepting hoarding and black marketing. These odious practices, as bad as they are, must be discouraged and nipped in the bud. And, whosoever is found indulging in these must be exposed and punished. In the meantime, let us all think over and adopt those practices that our ancestors were so adept and proficient in.