J&K Assembly dissolved a year ago, is centre aware?

AVINAV VERMA. Updated: 11/5/2019 9:46:10 AM Front Page

JAMMU: It seems that the BJP-led centre is not aware of the fact that the Jammu and Kashmir’s Legislative Assembly (LA) has been dissolved almost an year ago, as could be made out from an ‘acknowledgement communication’ sent out from the office of a union minister to saffron party’s president in Jammu and Kashmir.

In a communication dated October 23 this year, the Union Minister of Transport and Highways, Nitin Gadkari has mentioned BJP’s J&K head, Ravinder Raina as MLA of J&K Legislative Assembly.

This, even after, it was under BJP’s previous term in Delhi’s power corridors that Legislative Assembly was dissolved by then Governor Satya Pal Malik last year on November 21.

As the pictures of the letter went viral on social media platforms since Monday morning, a corrigendum or clarification from the party or Union Ministry was still awaited till late night.

Ironically, the picture of the communication letter was shared early morning by Ravinder Raina himself on his Facebook profile.

His post has been swarmed by innumerable comments with people questioning his credentials as the ‘MLA’, but the head of party in J&K is least bothered to acknowledge the same.

The communication from Gadkari pertains to the burning issue of Sarore toll plaza in Samba.

“I am in receipt of your letter dated October 12 regarding problems being faced by the public of Jammu due to improper establishment of toll plazas and suggesting to scrap the system of toll plaza in Jammu. The same has been forwarded to the chairman (NHAI) for necessary action,” the communication from Gadkari’s office reads.

The letter has been addressed to Raina, designating him as MLA, Jammu and Kashmir Legislative Assembly.

It was in reply to Raina’s letter in which he had requested Gadkari to scrap the “entire plan of establishing the toll plaza”.

“…it is an ill thought-out decision of the local officials of the NHAI in respect of the establishment of toll plazas in the Jammu region. There is one toll plaza functioning at Ban on Jammu Udhampur route and recently another toll plaza has been established and made functional at Sarore on the Jammu-Kathua route, while another toll plaza on the same route was established at Hiranagar or Rajbagh is being made shortly functional,” Raina had written.

“The distance between these toll plazas is in violation in the prescribed distance limit. They are at a far short distance inter-se than permissible. Further, the plaza at Sarore on the Jammu-Kathua road is very badly designed. This plaza has been causing great traffic jam, resulting in inconvenience to the public, and it takes all most two hours for vehicles to cross it. This has killed the very purpose of widening and improving this entire road. On top of it, the contractor behaves very roughly and intimidatingly with the public,” the letter reads.

His letter further reads, “The net result is that the public gets harassed due to these toll plazas which, instead of acting as a facility to them, are great hindrances and cause hardship. The Vaishno Devi Yatris have to pass through three plazas at Rajbagh or Hiranagar, Sarore and at Ban within the short distance of 120-km. The people of the state are greatly agitated on this count which is giving us a bad name.”

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