NC, Cong protest as locals not hired for Z-Morh tunnel work

Cong, NC protest as locals not hired for Z-Morh tunnel workThe issue of non-engagement of local technocrats and skilled labourers in the construction work of the Z-Morh tunnel at Sonmarg led to noisy scenes and a virtual confrontation between Finance Minister Haseeb Drabu and National Conference (NC) leader Mian Altaf Ahmad in the Assembly today.
Senior NC member and former minister Mian Altaf walked out of the House in protest over the use of “unparliamentary language” by Finance Minister Haseeb Drabu while replying to the former’s calling attention motion. Members of the NC and Congress also joined the walkout.
“A serious issue has been raised, let us go beyond the constituency and look at the overall scenario pertaining to the development of the state,” said Drabu. Having been unsatisfied with the written reply from the minister, Mian Altaf said that the promises made earlier had not been fulfilled. He said that the people of the area had cooperated fully and an assurance had been given that degree and diploma-holders from the Kangan constituency of the Ganderbal district would be adjusted in the construction work. The 6.5-km Z-Morh tunnel is a part of the Zojila tunnel that will connect the Kashmir valley with the Ladakh region. It falls in the Kangan constituency. The work on the Z-Morh tunnel started on November 11, 2015.
In his reply, the Finance Minister said that 300 local persons had been employed in the construction work. Of these, 150 workers had been engaged through various sub-contractors. He said this was in addition to the employment of 151 from the state, including 72 from the Kangan constituency and 79 from other districts.