Mini-Secretariat at Batmaloo a non-starter

SRINAGAR: Government is yet to start work on Mini-Secretariat at Batmaloo which was planned two years ago.
The aim of constructing Mini-Secretariat was to provide inhabitants of the district with hassle-free services of around 50 government departments with DC office under one roof.
For the construction of Mini-Secretariat, administration had vacated 100 kanals of land by shifting 62-year-old bus stand at Batamaloo – which housed around 7000 vehicles – to Parimpora.
Bashir Ahmad, a shopkeeper said, “Authority has forgotten this project even the foundation stone which was laid by former Chief Ministry Mehbooba Mufti in 2018. The ground has now become a dumping yard. Even shopkeepers throw wastage on the land.”
Some shopkeepers said that they have sold their properties to purchase shops from SDA “when the authority said that these shops were located in and around the general bus stand”.
Another businessman Bilal Ahmad said, “Despite assurances, authorities have taken no step to rehabilitation us. We visited many government offices, but nothing has been done so far. Every time they said the paperwork of the Mini-Secretariat has already been finished and the construction of the building will be completed within the stipulated time, but now two years has been passed and nothing has been done.”
In 2018, then Minister of State for Planning and Development, Ajay Nanda had said that a Detailed Project Report (DPR) amounting to Rs 49.93 crore for the proposed Mini-Secretariat complex Phase-I has been prepared and the tenders for the works are being floated.
An official at district administration told Kashmir Reader that due to the prevailing situation in the valley, the project has not been started and will be started this year.

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