J&K politicians go tricky over innocent killings

Whenever loss of life is reported from any corner of the state, the top politicians, bureaucrats, policy makers and Non Government Organisations (NGOs) of the entire Jammu and Kashmir State seem play tricky roles which reveals that they are more dedicated and focused on getting their names published in the news papers instead of doing some practical for the state citizens. 
The politicians of J&K State and other agencies which should work for the welfare of people have failed to initiate practical measures thus the citizens of the state continued to suffer in the absence of welfare measures and proper law enforcing and implementing agencies.
Students in schools are taught that the government in any democratic setup is ‘BY THE PEOPLE, OF THE PEOPLE, FOR THE PEOPLE’ but if one goes by the records of past few decades, it can be easily revealed that the common citizens are valued least and the preference is given to a selected lot of the society in every sphere of life.
In the present democratic setup, few, a selected lot, enjoys all sorts of privileges while the common people are left to suffer, cry, face the challenges and difficulties besides the wrath of this selected lot on the name of law and order. The powers in the hands of those who lack vision and social values, is taking tool of the common people heavily. Due to the lack of knowledge and at the most, indifferent attitude, least intrest in public welfare and practice of pleasing masters and mentors, the basic issues of people are left unattended.
Let us take traffic management issue, accidents are on rise and innocent passengers are being killed at an alarming rate but every time our politicians who all the times claim to do batter for the public welfare express their sympathies with the bereaved families. But in that too they play a trick. Instead of expressing sympathies with the bereaved families, these leaders without loosing any opportunity depute their subordinates to send a condolence message to the newspaper offices. But, have these politicians ever realized that, will any of bereaved family members read the news papers at such occasions of grief and sorrow. A common sense, says no. Yet why the loss of precious lives is made publicity stunt by these politicians?
After each road accident, those running the government came out with assurances that stringent measures would be taken to check the cause of accidents but with in days, every thing disappears as had been never said. The result as usual in another road accident like today’s in which at-least 30 people have been reported killed, including 12 women when the bus they were travelling in fell into the Chenab River in hilly district of Kishtwar today morning.
As there was no agency, authority or the official to check, the mini bus, which has the capacity of 20 to 22 was carrying over 35 passengers.
The overloading results in skidding of the bus and fell almost 500 feet down a gorge into the river at about 9:00 AM near Bandarkot village. 20 people died on the spot, another 5 succumbed while being taken to hospital and at least five bodies have been fished out from the river. Five seriously injured victims were airlifted to Jammu. Due to the over leading the driver of the mini-bus apparently failed to negotiate a sharp curve on a narrow stretch and met with an accident, the mini-bus was carrying mostly government employees (20 teachers killed) and was on its way from Kishtwar to Chhatroo.
For the last few years, it has been observed that traffic cops are deputed to check only documents and their validity, instead of overloading and health conditions of the drivers, the traffic cops are allegedly interested in ‘Hafta Vasooli’. 
It is a matter of grave concern that the numbers of road accidents particularly in the hill areas of erstwhile Doda district are on rise for the last few decades but unfortunately no agency/department has ever admitted their failure in containing these. 
It is the duty of all the agencies concerned with traffic management to exercise ruthless check to ensure against overloading, validity of driving license and the fitness of the drivers, condition of the vehicles, particularly buses and load carriers but it is unfortunate that there is no check on over-speeding etc to ensure such tragic mishaps do not take place.
Drivers at a number of places can be seen keeping money in their hand, when they see traffic cops on the road to grease their palms, so that they could be allowed to proceed without checking. It is regrettable that these cops are putting several lives in danger by allowing overloading and reckless passenger carriers.
The requirement is to remove this menace by ensuring the safety of passengers, which could not be ensured by checking documents only. In fact, the traffic cops should check the health conditions and temperament of the drivers and assess that the passengers are safe in the vehicles or not. 
It is time to change the old fashioned methods of checking documents, which ultimately assures revenue generation for the concerned agencies be changed and new methods like health/physical check-ups, mental check-ups and checking the condition of the vehicle be done in addition to other steps, which the planners think fit for ensuring safety of passengers.
Another issue, which needs to be redressed at the earliest, is to ban the use of Gutkha and pan Masala and even cigarettes by drivers. This practice is also emerging as a threat causing accidents. The need of the hour is to devise a prolonged strategy and remove the bottlenecks in the agencies concerned to minimize such incidents in future, which claim number of precious lives every time and leave several injured and handicapped. One fails to understand why overloading in allowed in hilly terrains despites knowing that this often results in fatal accidents killing many precious lives. If one has to see the cops of Traffic Police active, then he or she has to visit Jammu or Kashmir, the two main capital cities of the sate, where these cops immediately stands up and could be seen trying their best to seen perform best out of worst. Unfortunately their so called best attempts are not aimed at to regulate traffic or implement such a mechanism which could prevent the routine jams on the city roads. In-fact they are there to standup and create the mess, traffic chaos, jams and problems for the common people, whenever some VVIP, VIP or any body who is privileged to use red light atop the vehicle travels. On such occasion these ‘Brave’ cops in blue uniform of our Traffic Department’ become active so the ministers, bureaucrats and others alike could get impressed by their suddenly activities which gives a brief passage to their laziness.
The activeness not ends here only. When it comes to collection of money from either in the form of Challan, many say penalties but majority describe it as ‘Hafta’ applicable to commercial vehicles only on all roads- Highways more suitable for cops) for not using helmets or not carrying the papers/documents of vehicles, the faces of these ‘Brave Cops’ who can not control the overloading in cities as well as in hilly terrains, could be seen glowing.
Go out and try to find and feel the desire of a common cop who is dependent on his salary only. If asked, as I have many times, they want to settle their families; they desire to educate their children in good schools and desire to construct well furnished houses in city like Jammu for which they keep on trying to get them transferred in Traffic Department. It has been alleged in the past that for such transfers, some cops even offered ‘gift money’ (don’t read bribe, it is voluntary).
But have anybody ever tried to find out that why every cop wants to feel the stuff of ‘blue uniform’. I think, and yes, every body knows it but does not matter. Let them do what ever they want to do, let them remain relaxed and let every day people suffer and let passengers be killed in accidents due to overloading, who cares?. No body was, is and will be ever, exception might be there.
One fails to understand why overloading in allowed in hilly terrains despites knowing this often results in fatal accidents killing many precious lives. If one has to see the cops of Traffic Police active, then he or she has to visit Jammu or Kashmir, the two main capital cities of the sate, where these cops immediately stands up and could be seen trying their best to seen perform best out of worst. Unfortunately their so called best attempts are not aimed at to regulate traffic or implement such a mechanism which could prevent the routine jams on the city roads. In-fact they are there to standup and create the mess, traffic chaos, jams and problems for the common people, whenever some VVIP, VIP or any body who is privileged to use red light atop the vehicle travels. On such occasion these ‘Brave’ cops in blue uniform of our Traffic Department’ become active so the ministers, bureaucrats and others alike could get impressed by their suddenly activities which gives a brief passage to their laziness.
The activeness not ends here only. When it comes to collection of money from either in the form of Challan, many say penalties but majority describe it as ‘Hafta’ applicable to commercial vehicles only on all roads- Highways more suitable for cops) for not using helmets or not carrying the papers/documents of vehicles, the faces of these ‘Brave Cops’ who can not control the overloading in cities as well as in hilly terrains, could be seen glowing.
Go out and try to find and feel the desire of a common cop who is dependent on his salary only. If asked, as I have many times, they want to settle their families; they desire to educate their children in good schools and desire to construct well furnished houses in city like Jammu for which they keep on trying to get them transferred in Traffic Department. It has been alleged in the past that for such transfers, some cops even offered ‘gift money’ (don’t read bribe,-it is voluntary).
But have anybody ever tried to find out that why every cop wants to feel the stuff of ‘blue uniform’. I think, and yes, every body knows it but does not matter. Let them do what ever they want to do, let them remain relaxed and let every day people suffer and let passengers be killed in accidents due to overloading, who cares?. No body was, is and will be ever, exception might be there.
As usual, this time too accident victims have been assured best possible medical care but the state government officials have to think over this issue and frame some guidelines to revamp the traffic management department. 
The establishment of trauma centres at important stations all along the routes is significant, especially in the hilly areas, as in any eventuality the injured have to be shifted to GMC, Jammu. The time lost in shifting also adds to the number of causalities. Up-gradation of sub-district hospitals, district hospitals and even the GMC is urgently required. Twenty-four hour availability of specialists can help save many lives, if the number of doctors coupled with spirit to work for humanity is in place.
This piece of my writing is not to target Govt or any Department. I wish that let the authorities came out with some corrosive measures so the over loading could be prevented at-least the frequency of deaths caused in such tragic accidents due to overloading could be minimized.
Authorities have to wake-up. I hope the authorities would devise a mechanism to check the overloading in hilly areas which have dangerous roads for travel and some precious live.
CM’s assurance?

In reaction to the road accident that took place on Bhaderwah–Doda road, in which 41 people were killed, J&K CM Omar Abdullah on February 25, 2009 had said that fully equipped Quick Rescue Teams (QRT) would be deployed with ambulances for immediate rescue operations in times of road accidents on national highways in the state. 
He had added that four to five spots on the national highways and the Doda-Bhaderwah road would be identified for such deployment. 
Personnel of the Border Roads Organisation would be deployed to regulate traffic on the national highways at spots where widening of the road is being undertaken, CM had said. 
The directions came after the Chief Minister visited the accident site on Bhaderwah Doda road where 41 people were killed in a bus accident.
CM had also issued instructions that the Motor Vehicles Department should put commercial vehicles to stringent scrutiny annually. But can any one within the government can tell what steps have been initiated in this regard?

 
Why condolences?

Keeping the decade’s old tradition alive, every minister, political leader, social activist and those after name and fame as usual today flooded newspaper and news channel offices with their condolence messages over the tragic accident in Kishtwar this morning. But after analyses, one fails to understand why only condolences are expressed and conveyed? Why anybody can not come out with solutions to such problems. It is unfortunate that those who have to initiate corrective measure are publicizing their names through media. If those in the government will go like this, who will take steps to improve the condition of common people and safeguard safety and security of the citizens. As the time is changing and people’s expectations are increasing, these leaders have to change their attitude and approach and instead should come out with some practicalities.




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