Locals question ‘Smart City’ initiative as heavy rainfall inundates Srinagar

As heavy rainfall drenched the valley, several areas of Srinagar city, including the iconic Boulevard, have been inundated, prompting concerns among locals and paediatricians alike.

Paediatricians and residents have criticised the Smart City initiative, citing its alleged contribution to the transformation of parts of Srinagar into virtual water pools.

Expressing dismay, locals from different parts of Srinagar city told the news agency—Kashmir News Observer (KNO) that the continuous downpour since Sunday has turned streets into streams, making it difficult to carry out daily activities. The authorities need to take immediate action to address this issue.

Basit, a local from Nowhatta said, “We feel like we’re walking on rivers, as the roads have been waterlogged in almost every part of Srinagar, causing problems.”

Another local, Zuhaib, echoed similar sentiments saying, “Where is the smart city? Where do all those promises go? It has only been raining since last night, and Srinagar has been waterlogged. What are the authorities doing?”

He added, “If it continues to rain for three to four days, we’ll have to swim on our roads instead of walking, as our roads have already turned into pools and we don’t see any development anywhere, only fake promises.”

Moreover, locals from Boulevard, Dalgate, Karan Nagar, Khayam, Khanyar, Sonwar, Nowhatta and other areas have called on authorities for swift measures to tackle the situation.

Meanwhile, the Srinagar Municipal Corporation in a handout issued to KNO said that in the face of heavy rainfall, the SMC has “demonstrated exemplary work”.

“As per directions given by Commissioner SMC, Dr Owais Ahmad, the staff, particularly the drainage wing of SMC, remained alert and was seen working on the ground to tackle the issue of water inundation due to continuous and heavy rainfall,” it said.

With areas like Gogji Bagh, Hazratbal, Pamposh Colony, Palpora, Sir Sayed Market Gogji Bagh, Humhama, Bemina, Jawahar Nagar, Khanyar, Eidgah, HMT, TRC, Makia Point Boulevard, etc affected by waterlogging, the SMC swiftly mobilised its workforce and machinery to address the situation with remarkable efficiency,” the statement reads.

It adds, “In a bid to enhance grievance redressal mechanisms, the SMC has made its 24×7 Control Room which works round the clock easily accessible and actively interacts with the general public, through the following helpline numbers: 0194-2470465, – 0194-2474499, 1800-180-7038,” it reads further—(KNO)


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