Officials fail to demolish concrete building in Pahalgam wildlife zone

Srinagar: The officials in tourist resort of Pahalgam have failed to demolish the concrete commercial structure which is being raised by a retired bureaucrat on the fragile wild life land.
Former Chief Conservator Mir Inayatullah, who is raising the concrete structure within an existing hut, has, however, stopped the work and locked the hut from outside after a report by this news paper about the violation on Saturday.
The report had argued how wildlife officials were brazenly allowing commercial construction in a protected wildlife zone.
“When the story appeared, the wild life officials advised him to lock the same and stop the work for some days. Since the concrete construction is being raised within the existing one you can see even the glass panes of the hut having been covered with curtains,” a wild life official told Kashmir Reader.
He said that the top officials of the department even constructed a wooden bridge over Lidder few months ago to reach the hut.
“The huts located near the area belong to influential people only. So the officials fell dozens of green alpines for the construction of wooden bridge near the spot only to ensure the easy access to the huts,” the official said.
Locals were aghast over alleged indolence of the government.
“On one hand the forest minister, Bali Bhagat is busy celebrating wild life week calling for conservation of forests and wildlife, but on the other hand, the officials here are busy allowing the fragile wild life land to be ravaged for their monetary gains,” said Javed Ahmad, a Pahalgam resident.
Wildlife warden, Anantnag, Mohammad Sadiq, told Kashmir Reader said that he cannot go for the demolition of the structure.
“The permission for the same has been granted by Pahalgam Development Authority and the decision to demolish it lies with the government,” Sadiq said.
However, minister of state for forests, Abdul Majid Padar, who on Saturday had assured to look into the matter, said that the officials informed him that no construction was going on the forest land. “I have got the pictures of the structure now and I will seriously look into it now,” the minister said.