HC prohibits waste dumping in Gulmarg forests, seeks report about damage to trees

HC prohibits waste dumping in Gulmarg forests, seeks report about damage to trees

Srinagar: Jammu and Kashmir High Court High has directed Executive Officer Municipal Committee Tangmarg to ensure that no waste is dumped in the forests of Gulmarg, the most frequented tourist destination in Kashmir Valley.
Hearing an application, a division bench of Justice M M Kumar and Justice Hasnain Massodi also directed the Forest Department to furnish comprehensive report about the damages caused due to the dumping of the municipal waste in the forest area.
The direction followed submission by advocate Tawheed Ahmad for applicant that hundreds of trees have dried up due the dumping of the waste and the forest department may be directed to furnish the list.
Meanwhile the court asked law officer of State Pollution Control Board, Mohammad Maqbool Shah, to visit Hotel Himalaya Khyber Resort and furnish a report in light of an application filed by a lawyer, alleging raising of illegal construction and “willful and deliberate violation of orders passed by the High court” by the hotelier.
“The (SPCB) law officer, who is present in the court, has acceded to our request to personally visit the spot known as Hotel Himalaya Khyber Resort and furnish a report with regard to the allegation made in the application,” the court said.
Advocate Salman Mattoo, the applicant, would accompany him, the court said and directed him to submit the report within one week.
Meanwhile, the court also issued notice to Gulmarg Development Authority which was accepted by its standing counsel, advocate Mohsin Qadri.
The court directed him to file a complete status report with regard to the allegations made in the application.
Both the applications came up during the hearing of a Public Interest Litigation filed by one Rafiq Ahmad Zargar, seeking directions from the court for ensuring planned development and protection of environment and ecosystem of Gulmarg.
Later the court brought Srinagar, Pahalgam, Katra, Patnitop, Jammu and other areas in its purview.

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