Public cooperation, Govt’s vision can do anything: Masoom

Parking, traffic problem at peak, monkeys disturbing lives

Sanjeev K. Sharma
JAMMU: Wrongly parked vehicles, traffic mess, indecent acts by students in lonely streets, roads and lanes encroached by shopkeepers are a few issues to count in Ward number-10 of Jammu Municipal Corporation (JMC).
Narrow lanes with broken tiles with sunlight hardly entering inside due to overcrowded homes, many of which still having a touch of old days designs and styles is all what one can witness in this Ward comprising of City Chowk, Super Bazaar, Ranvireshwar Mandir, Parade, Raj Tilak Road, Rani Park, Kachi Chawani, Afgana Mohallah, Diwan Mandir, Khilona Wali Gali, Pacca Danga, Sehgal Street, Hanuman Gali, Dhontly Bazaar etc.
Apart from all this Civil Secretariat, Police Control Rom, old Sabzi Mandi, Ranbir School, Parade College etc are fall in this Ward.
“For me, the biggest problem is monkeys. Many times monkeys eat food etc in our homes and spoil the rest of things. They even open the refrigerators to relish dishes of their choice and scare anyone present at home and come in herds of dozens or more,” Pryanka Rani-a housewife of Pacca Danga area said.
Shamsher Singh-a retired army officer said that young boys and girls coming for tuition or coaching classes in Pacca Danga and Kachi Chawni areas mostly are seen in lonely deserted lanes doing indecent acts.
“We can’t tolerate such shameful activities in our area and I have many times objected to such activities in my area,” he said appealing to the parents to keep an eye over their children and inculcate some morality in them.
Omkar Nath-a senior citizen informed that worst is the traffic scenario at Kachi Chawni area and other parts of old Jammu city with minibuses and rashly driven vehicles as main contributors and what to say of madly parked vehicles anywhere.
He alleges that traffic cops are known for corrupt practices and the problem multiplies due to no control and check on it.
Many people have complaints regarding encroachment by the shopkeepers in the Ward especially along roadsides where they keep their goods for sale.
“They almost covered drains at some places even concrete platform is erected which on one hand creates problems in public and traffic movement while on the other hand it becomes tough to clean such drains,” Vandana Gupta-a teacher said.
More people when contacted talked about the problems of stray dogs, garbage disposal, chocked drains, poor street lights, sanitation problems etc.
The newly elected Corporator, Anil Masoom was contacted with all these issues.
In an exclusive interview with EXCELSIOR he talked about his plans for solutions to all the issues confronting his Ward.
Starting with the vehicle parking problem he said, though there are three parking slots-City Chowk Smart Parking, one near Centre Basic School and another at Kachi Chawni, yet the parking problem is there because of very high load.
“There are many coaching and tuition centers in the Ward apart from business points including shops etc. So students and others mostly park their vehicles wrongly especially in evening hours as it is time of tuitions and this wrong parking may cost heavily especially in case of some emergency,” he said adding that the public really lack parking sense.
However, he said that after the Bus Stand Multi-storey Parking gets completed it will ease the parking problems of the city including his Ward.
“There was a proposal for parking slot project at Khokha Market near PCR but it came under litigation,” he informed.
The Corporator disclosed a shocking fact that wrongly constructed lanes and drains in the old Jammu city are now breeding rats which have destroyed the drains and have made burrows inside the very foundations of the houses there as a result the localities may sink or collapse anytime.
“Had glass and salt mixed concrete used in their construction, the rats would have not destroyed the city foundations in this way.
He further informed that even sloping of the lanes and drains is not properly leveled while making the lanes and this result in water-logging at many places during rains or drain overflow.
He informed that door to door garbage collection has started at certain places and soon entire Ward will be covered by this system.
On stray animals he said that abandoned cows are not seen these days in his Ward but for stray dogs, he further said that there is no solution in mind presently as they are left after sterilization.
“A big dog yard outside residential area may solve this problem,” he said taking a dig at the sterilization process presently practiced on dogs here.
“The sterilization is a technical process after which dogs need 15 days observation while in Jammu they are released the same day so they spread infection,” he informed.
The Corporator further said that a Departmental Coordination Committee is urgently required as certain departments like PDD, PWD, BSNL etc take turns to dig lanes for their works and this keeps on harassing the locals in that particular locality, where such operations take place, for no fault of theirs.
On monkey problem he said that root cause of this is clearing of forests with which fruit trees have also been cleared so monkeys find nothing to eat and they venture into residential areas.
Masoom is a first timer Corporator on BJP mandate.
Anil Masoom won the Urban Local Bodies elections with a margin 600 votes after defeating his nearest rival Gagan Sethi of Congress who was polled 474 votes against 1074 polled to Masoom.