Budgam, Aug 17: The locals from Budgam Thursday staged a massive protest against the installation of smart meters.
The protesters particularly women blocked the traffic and stopped Power Development Department from installing the meters.
While reacting over the installation of smart meters, former Cabinet Minister and three-times legislator from Central Kashmir’s Budgam Ruhullah Mehdi said that this administration believes in ‘coercion and intimidation’ and has been imposed on the people of Valley.
Ruhullah Mehdi was reacting after the locals from Haknipora village of Budgam blocked the road and staged a protest against the installation of Smart Meters.
“These things (installation of smart meters) can’t be imposed. These are peoples’ decisions and their involvement is inevitable. The current administration believes in force,” he said.
Ruhullah Mehdi said that the installation of smart meters is a welcome step but the economic condition of the people should be improved. “Since the 2014 floods, the economy collapsed in Kashmir. Let the administration improve the economic condition of the people and then install the smart meters,” he said.
He added that the administration is hell-bent to get the meters installed as it is not the peoples’ administration but the one that has been imposed on the masses and believes in force. “This village (Haknipora) is a poverty-ridden village. The basic aim of the state was the social welfare and if you really want people to grow then it is important to make them socially and economically vibrant,” he said.
In response to a question, Ruhullah Mehdi said that it is a futile exercise to talk to the local administration and still he wants to convey to them not to force mothers and sisters to hit to roads. “Improve their economic conditions and then install the smart meters,” Ruhullah Mehdi said. [KNT]
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