Trucks Carrying Flood Relief Material Halted Near Border Check Post In Kashmir

24 September 2014

Jammu: Authorities in Jammu and Kashmir stopped nearly 45 trucks loaded with relief material for flood victims from entering the valley on Wednesday. Unprecedented floods in the state this month have left hundreds of people dead and tens of thousands homeless. Trucks carrying food items, utensils, blankets, medicines and more were stopped at Lakhanpur in Kathua district by the toll Posts of Excise Department and the Sales Tax Department due to incomplete formalities. The trucks belonged to Shri Amarnath Sewa Mandal of Patiala, an organisation that works to help the poor, old and unprivileged people and is also devoted to help people undertaking the pilgrimage to sacred shrine of Amarnath. President of the organisation, Mohan Deep Sharma, said their trucks have been halted for two days. 'We have got two trucks full of ration and other things including quilts and utensils. But they are not letting us go further from the Jammu and Kashmir barrier,' said Sharma. Sharma added they have been facing trouble and are worried that such legal formalities might pose hindrance in distribution of relief material to the flood-affected areas. However, the authorities say the trucks have been stopped due to incomplete documentation work, and some of the trucks have been cleared while others will be cleared soon. The authorities are also framing a pattern for the same so that there is no delay in the future. More than 75,000 people have been affected in partly submerged homes in Srinagar, Kashmir's main city of more than a million people, where roads have been transformed into stagnant canals strewn with wreckage, trash and dead animals. More than 2,00,000 people have been rescued since the floods arrived and communication networks have also been partially restored. The army has deployed about 30,000 troops for rescue and relief operations and soldiers distributed 2,24,000 litres of water and food to survivors. In a gesture of solidarity, staff at the Indian Prime Minister's Office (PMO) also gave up one day's salary for flood relief.