CM lays foundation stone of parking, road upgradation projects

Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti laying foundation stone of multi-level parking at Lal Chowk, Srinagar on Wednesday. —Excelsior/Shakeel
Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti laying foundation stone of multi-level parking at Lal Chowk, Srinagar on Wednesday. —Excelsior/Shakeel

Excelsior Correspondent

SRINAGAR, Jan 4: Giving a push to the upgradation of infrastructure facilities in Srinagar city, Chief Minister, Mehbooba Mufti today laid the foundation of two major parking facilities in the city centre which are set to ease the problem of traffic congestion by a great measure in the summer capital.
The Chief Minister laid the foundation of multi-level parking complex at Sheikhbagh and Old State Motor Garages complex which, on completion, would provide a total parking facility for around 1100 vehicles. The two projects are expected to cost Rs 55 crore and would be completed within two years.
The ramp type six floor parking facilities at Lal Chowk would be of major relief to the commuters, shopkeepers and those visiting the city centre. Multi-level car parking there was a persistent demand of the people as the same would help in ensuring congestion free traffic movement through the city.
Interacting with people after laying the foundations, the Chief Minister said Srinagar holds huge tourist retention potential and for that her Government has decided to upgrade the civic and other facilities in the summer capital. She said given the fact that many heritage places and shrines exist in the city besides other attractions, it can be made a tourist stop-over after operationalizing these upgraded facilities.
Mehbooba Mufti said old city Srinagar – popularly known as Shahar-e-Khaas holds a special historic significance and regretted that it had to bear the brunt of turmoil of past three decades. She said many developmental projects have been thought of to make up for the same. She said given the congestion at the place, housing pattern in downtown Srinagar would be given a new look so that people living there would not have to shift from their place.
Minister of State for Housing & Urban Development, Asiea Naqash; MLC, Khursheed Alam; Divisional Commissioner, Kashmir, Baseer Ahmad Khan; IGP Kashmir zone, SJM Gillani; Deputy Commissioner, Srinagar, Dr. Farooq Ahmad Lone; Vice Chairman, Srinagar Development Authority, Tehseen Mustafa; officers of divisional and district administration and a large number of people were present on the occasion.
Earlier, the Chief Minister laid the foundation stone of upgraded Magam-Beerwah-Budgam road which would be constructed at a cost of Rs. 31.82 crore. The ambitious 31 kilometre connectivity project, which includes many RCC culverts and extension of Nasrullah Pora Bridge, would link many tourist destinations in the region with the national highway.
The Chief Minister fixed the deadline of one year for the completion of the project and asked the concerned department to ensure that the completion deadlines are met.
However, local MLAs, including NC leader and former Chief Minister Omar Abdullah, were missing from the functions as they were apparently not invited.
While the two parking projects in Srinagar come under Amira Kadal Assembly constituency represented by Mehbooba’s own party member Syed Altaf Bukhari, the Beerwah constituency of Budgam district is represented by Omar Abdullah, the opposition leader.
Both the MLAs were apparently not invited to the Government functions in their respective constituencies.
Not only were the two local MLAs absent from the official function, their names were also not put on the plaque of the foundation stone.
Bukhari was Minister for Roads and Buildings in the previous PDP-BJP coalition Government led by Mehbooba’s late father Mufti Mohammad Sayeed.
While Bukhari was not present at the function, MLC Khurshid Alam, a PDP leader from Srinagar, attended the event.