Despite Govt’s claims, Anantnag village still in dark

Suhail Bhat

Srinagar, Nov 10: State Government’s boastful claims of electrifying the unelectrified villages under Central Government’s flagship scheme of rural electrification, Deendayal Upadhyaya Gram Jyoti Yojana, fall like pack of cards in respect of Anantnag’s Tetan Village where people are still burning firewood to illuminate their rooms.
In the backdrop of picturesque landscape and nestled on the foothills, Tetan is an impoverished tribal village on the outskirts of Anantnag district. Forty households with a population of nearly 500 individuals reside in this mountainous village. The very basic amenities like electricity, road and drinking water facilities are a distant dream for the residents and they have never seen them reach their habitation.
Last year Power Development Department embarked on an ambitious mission of electrification of all unelectrified villages by the end of this year under its multi-crore flagship scheme of rural electrification, Deendayal Upadhyaya Gram Jyoti Yojana (DDUJGY) but departments failure to implement the scheme has plunged the areas like Tetan into darkness as more than hundred villages are yet to see electricity.
Shabaz Ahmad, a local while narrating his plight, said he is 21 and has never seen electricity in his home. “We still use fire wood to illuminate our homes in this age of science and technology. Black smoke coming from the wood shrouds our evenings which has put our health vulnerable to life threatening diseases like Tuberculosis and Asthma. Even my eyes have dried,” he said.
When asked whether they have approached any Government official or politician, he said: “I have only seen them when elections are around. They only make fake promise to seek votes. After elections are over they forget this place. I have myself visited a number of officials but they always say that will conduct survey in coming days.”
When contacted Deputy Commissioner Anantnag, Syed Abid Hussian he said: “I will tell my subordinates to visit the place to seek reason as why is that place in darkness. Let me see what they will come up with”.

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