People illegally occupy public hand-pumps, install motors

Motor installed illegally on a public handpump in Mendhar. -Excelsior/Rahi Kapoor
Motor installed illegally on a public handpump in Mendhar. -Excelsior/Rahi Kapoor

* SDM directs police to register FIR
Excelsior Correspondent
MENDHAR, July 24: Some people have illegally occupied the water hand pumps, installed in different parts of Mendhar Sub Division in Poonch district for public by the Jal Shakti Department under Government schemes.
Reports said there are hundreds of water hand-pumps in Mendhar Sub Division which were installed by the Government under a schemes to provide water to the peoples but there are countless hand- pumps which are being used by few people for their personal gain by installing motors on them, denying general public of the benefit.
It is said that a complaint was lodged by Shah Mohammad, son of Imam Din, resident of Jugal on behalf of villagers in this regard before Sub Divisional Magistrate (SDM) Mendhar. It was found after complaint that a public water hand pump was installed by the Jal Shakti Department under the Government scheme in Mohalla Sardana of village Jugal about five years ago, but some people misused it, took out its handle and illegally put a mortar on it for their homes. The connection was taken away while other families are worried over the water shortage in the locality.
Based on the complaints of the people, SDM Mendhar Jehangir Khan directed the police to register an FIR against the culprits. SDM said he has also directed Jal Shakti Department Mendhar officials to report about the status of all the water hand pumps that have been installed in Mendhar Sub Division. Also identify who have allowed to install the motors and the accused families. After the report is submitted, action will be taken against those who have got connections in their homes by putting illegal motors, SDM said.
Locals of the area have also accused the Jal Shakti Department officials of the connivance in the matter. They said that with the connivance of the employees of the department, some vicious people have opened the handle of public hand pumps and put a motor to supply water to their homes. People have sought strict action against the accused and also sought intervention of DC Poonch and Chief Engineer Jal Shakti Department, Jammu.