Expressing serious concern over reports that a number of precious lives have been lost besides dozens of people left incapacitated in Tosa Maidan firing range during last few decades, the CPI (M) Jammu & Kashmir state secretary, Mohammad Yousuf Tarigami has urged upon the government to look into the extension of lease for the firing range. He has requested that the alternate place be found to relocate the artillery range in  the larger interests of the public.
In a statement issued today, the Tarigami took strong exception to politicization of the issue saying that Tosa Maidan matter should be addressed exclusively on humanitarian aspects as the issue involves loss of precious lives and damages to public property.
He said the apprehensions displayed by civil society in general and the locals of Tosa Maidan in particular deserve a serious attention from the authorities. He also expressed dismay over reports about delay in disbursement of compensation to the affected families of Tosa Maidan who have either lost their members or suffered huge damage to their properties during artillery drills.
Referring to enormous tourism potential of the area, Tarigami said that government must also explore and chalk out a comprehensive plan to develop Tosa Maidan and its adjoining areas as a tourist destination to create economic opportunities especially for the local populace. “Initiatives to explore Tosa Maidan and its adjoining places as a health resort will surely give a flip to the economic activities in these areas,” he observed.
The CPI (M) leader said that the Civil-Military liaison committee constituted by the government must take all the aspects of the matter into consideration before recommending any solution including finding an alternate location for the firing range to address the issue.
April 15, 2014