In an editorial note, daily Aftab writes that due to inclement weather and frequent closing of national Highway, fruit industry has suffered losses. Since the fruit does not reach market in time, it perishes. The traffic authorities also create hurdle in movement of trucks laden with fruit.
The Current Situation:
“After tourism sector, Fruit industry is an important pillar of Kashmir’s economy. But this year, inclement weather and disturbed conditions have destroyed fruit industry. The traders dealing with fruit, and other people connected with it, have become dependent. Though administration started the ‘intervention’ scheme for transporting fruit to the markets, but this scheme also did not succeed. When fruit could not reach outside markets, what use was the use? Due to disturbed situation and bad weather, Srinagar-Jammu national highway remained closed for traffic after every two or three days. As a consequence trucks loaded with fruit were stuck on the highway. When fruit remains in boxes or packets, it perishes. If it reaches the market later, nobody will buy it. Reports are that trucks loaded with fruit, that left Srinagar for Delhi in the beginning of December have not been allowed to proceed further on the highway. The drivers say that traffic authorities give first preference to convoy of vehicles of army and paramilitary forces and after that the passenger buses or vehicles, are allowed to proceed. After that the trucks with goods are permitted to move ahead. They say that as soon as traffic people see fruit laden trucks coming, they don’t allow them to go ahead. In this way this industry is dying its death. Many fruit traders say that they have taken loans from banks to carry on the trade. They never thought that they would have to face such a situation. Why traffic people indulge in such actions? They don’t give any answers. Fruit merchants say that their economic condition has deteriorated so much that they can’t pay the monthly installments of the loan. The concerned authorities must raise this issue with police departments so that fruit trucks are allowed to proceed and reach market in time. Whenever there is traffic jam on highway, or movement is restricted, the police allows vehicles to proceed by turns. But fruit trucks are deliberately stopped. This way, the fruit perishes, and the freight payable to trucks, gets enhanced. The traffic people must look into to and not make fruit traders to suffer a loss that is irretrievable.”
[Courtesy: Urdu Daily, Aftab, Srinagar, Kashmir, December 28, 2019].
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