Cover Story Jammu & Kashmir The Lead

Sand extraction contract: J&K admin unmoved; will continue protests till order is revoked, says Altaf Bukhari

‘Staged peaceful protests in all districts of UT; It’s a question of 5 lakh people who are on verge of starvation’

Abid Bashir

Srinagar, Mar 27: Stating that Apni Party leaders along with the stakeholders of mining and sand extraction staged protests in all districts across the J&K Unit,  the Apni Party chief Syed Muhammad Altaf Buhkari petitioned the Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha to roll back the sand extraction contract order issued post August 5, 2019 in the interest of five lakh people associated with the mining business in the UT. He said that so far J&K administration is umoved and that the Apni Party will continue to stage protests till the order is revoked.

“Last time, we had given an ultimatum of a week to the government to roll back the controversial order that has hit the livelihood of 5 lakh people associated mining and sand extraction. But government remained unmoved,” Bukhari said adding a press conference in Srinagar as per news agency.

“Today, Apni Party leaders along with the stakeholders of mining and sand extraction staged protests in all districts of the UT. In some places that include Budgam and Baramulla, our protests were confined to a particular place. Our protests remained peaceful in all districts of the UT.”

He said that government seems to be least bothered about the “serious issues” but Apni Party is committed to fight for the rights of 5 lakh people who are on the verge of starvation. “We will continue to protest till the order is revoked,” Bukhari said, adding that the 5 lakh people who have borrowed loan from banks to buy boats, tippers, and crusher machines are all set to become defaults. “Does that suit the government,” Bukhari asked.

Asked if the government fails to revoke the controversial order, he said: “We have no option other than to intensify protests.”  To a query that other political parties are silent over the issue, Bukhari said he can’t speak on behalf of others. “They may be having other priorities. I don’t see politics in it. This is an issue of a common man and we will strive hard for it,” he said—(KNO)

 

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