Abid Hussain

Rampant illicit activities ruin charm of Doodhpathri, authorities nowhere

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Doodhpathri: In absence of surveillance by concerned authorities, Budgam’s most visited tourist spot- Doodhpathri (Valley of milk) has been turned into a centre for illegal activities.

People have to face many issues while picnicking here, as anti-social elements are enjoying free hand who often times indulge in harassment, gambling and scuffle.

A group of people told ‘Kashmir Images’ that a few notorious persons present at the picnic spot unnecessarily harass visitors particularly females on different pretexts, which has affected the flow of visitors here.

“Recently, I along with my family members visited Doodhpathri and some goons started passing comments at us,” said a person wishing anonymity, adding that, “My family members were so frightened with the behaviour of the goons that we left from there within no time.”

Besides harassment, gambling and scuffle are common at Doodhpathri. Dozens of youth could be seen indulge in gambling in the area. Gamblers here make a bet that starts from 10 rupees upto 500, sometimes it crosses to 2000 rupees.

Ghulam Mohammad, a visitor said that rampant gambling has given rise to social evils in the area. “When people loose thousands in gambling, they resort to hooliganism and scuffle,” he said, adding that in the process innocents face problems.

According to locals, police has also turned a blind eye towards illicit activities. “Sometimes police visit the area but they have never arrested any anti-social element here,” said a shopper at Doodhpathri.

While talking to ‘Kashmir Images’ Sub-District Magistrate Khansahib, Samer Naik said, “Illegal activities will be curbed soon as we have raised these issues with police.”

Samer added that Doodhpathri Development Authority (DDA) is the competent authority to check the menace in the area.

However, like always Additional Deputy Commissioner Budgam, Mohammad Farooq who has been given charge of Chief Executive Officer DDA, did not bother to respond to repeated calls. It is pertinent to mention that most of the times, Farooq is not receiving calls of Budgam reporters. Almost every time, when any story needs his comment, he does not give respond.

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