4 years on, Srinagar artisans await flood compensation


Rifat Ara is one among the 26 artisans in Srinagar who are awaiting flood compensation since 2014. 
Ara, whose father and brother have some health issues, has eight sisters. She supported the extended family by whatever she earned from her crewel embroidery work. But 2014 floods ended this all. 
She lost everything in the floods and what remained was a hope that the authorities, as promised, would compensate her and other artisans sharing her fate.
Like Ara, there were 25 more registered artisans in Srinagar who had met the same fate. 
“The administration after proper verification of our losses promised compensation. But four years down the line, we are moving from pillar to post for compensation,” Ara said.
“Twenty artisans among us are females with some of them not having any male support in their family. We have spent lot of money to meet the official formalities yet not a single penny has been given in compensation,” she rued. 
Ara said she used to support the studies of her younger sisters, “who after my loss of embroidery work left their studies.”
The artisans who were associated with embroidery, paper machie, carpet weaving said that soon after the 2014 floods, the then deputy commissioner Srinagar sent a team of officials to assess the loss.
“We filed FIRs and the police also verified everything on the spot and so did the district administration. We were told to fulfill the formalities like court affidavits, letters from Tehsildars, etc. that we did. Yet no compensation has been given”, said Shamima Bano, an artisan from Bemina.
The aggrieved artisans said that they had also called on the Chief Minister last year. “She assured us that our issue will be resolved in 15 days. But it has been around a year since then yet nothing has happened”, they said.
Divisional commissioner Kashmir, Baseer Khan expressed ignorance about the issue as the aggrieved artisans, he said, had not approached him. He advised this reporter to contact the DC Srinagar in this regard.
However, the DC Srinagar did not respond to the repeated calls and the text messages for a week from Greater Kashmir.

Join our newsetter

Sign up today for free and be the first to get notified of new updates.