Forest officials in Pahalgam have chopped off green alpines to build a makeshift bridge across Lidder river near Sarbal. The move has been initiated to facilitate the Darshan of ‘Charri Mubarak’ at Ganash temple located at Mamal.
Locals alleged that the move by the forest officials should be taken seriously by the authorities and strict action should be initiated against the erring officials.
“We regard and respect the sentiments of our Hindu brothers and wish them a safe and happy pilgrimage. But the cruel forest authorities can’t plunder the nature using the religion of a particular community as an excuse,” a local resident, wishing anonymity said .
He said that when those who are bound to protect the forest wealth will try to plunder it, how will others stay behind.
The locals believe that the move has been initiated at the senior level in the forest department.
“The local officers will not muster courage to take this step as the move is clear violation of the Supreme Court verdict barring any person or even a government department to cut down a green tree,” another local resident added.
The residents have appealed the Chief Minister and the Forest minister to take cognizance of the issue and take immediate action against the involved employees.