Kashmir Indepth
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Govt offices out of bounds for common masses in Kashmir, grievances remain unaddressed


Ishtiyaq Ahmad
SRINAGAR, Sep 21(KINS): Government offices in Kashmir are out of bounds for common masses as officials prefer to stay away from people amid COVID-19.
As people are facing immense difficulties amid COVID-19, most of the government offices are closed for common people.
Take instance, the Civil Secretariat Srinagar, which is the highest seat of governance has been closed for common people. Even journalists who have to meet officials related to grievances of people are not allowed to go inside.
“We have strict orders not to allow anyone to go inside,” a security personal stationed outside the civil secretariat told this reporter.
Every day several people come up with their grievances and are pleading before cops to let them go inside so they could bring their issues into the notice of concerned officials. But all their pleas fall into deaf ears.
“We visited the Civil Secretariat three times for the last 10 days but are not allowed to go inside. Our area is without ration and electricity and we have to meet Advisor or other officials but are not allowed to go inside,” Ghulam Mohammad, a resident of Baramulla told news agency Kashmir Indepth News Service (KINS).
He was waiting along with a group of people outside the Civil Secretariat.
A delegation from Budgam had to return home from the Civil Secretariat after they were not allowed to go inside the Civil Secretariat.
 “We visited several times for the last one week for redressal of sanitation problem, shortage of drinking water. Every time we have to return home as we are not allowed to go inside. Nobody is against social distancing norms but bureaucrats are totally staying away from people,” the delegation said.
Four sanitation tunnels have been installed at Civil Secretariat Srinagar. Surprisingly, none of them was operational.
The KINS had also managed to click videos which show none of the sanitation tunnels were operational at the Civil Secretariat.
Srinagar Municipal Corporation Gaznazfar Ali, had said that the disinfectant was not available. “We have placed the order and are expecting it by tomorrow. We’ll make it functional again,” he had told KINS.
The tunnel disinfects people by spraying chemicals on every person who goes through it.
The situation is almost the same in government offices where gates have been locked and people are not allowed to meet concerned officials.
“We are not allowed to go inside. We have to meet the Director but the gate has been locked,” one of the teachers who was waiting outside the Directorate of School Education Kashmir office said.
This comes at a time when the government on Monday reopened schools in Kashmir.(KINS)

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