SRINAGAR: The J&K High Court on Thursday came down heavily on state authorities over the lackadaisical approach in saving the tourist resorts in the state.
The court directed authorities to finalize Environment Impact Assessment (EIA) report and Environment Impact Management Plan (EIMP) for Sonamarg so that comprehensive status report is submitted before the court. Direction was also passed to Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Sonmarg to get the resort connected with geo-tagging. Hearing the Litigation on Sonmarg Resort, the division bench of Acting Chief Justice Ramalingam Sudhakar and Justice MK Hanjura came down on the authorities for their “casual approach” in saving the tourist resorts which court observed compelled it to reopen the matter otherwise closed in September 2015.
“It is not understandable as why authorities are not taking the issue of environment seriously,” Justice Sudhakar said.
The court observed that meadows are disappearing and this is a cause of concern for everyone. Amicus curie Nadeem Qadri had submitted before the court that green meadows in Sonamarg have disappeared and unplanned development has led to this disaster.
The court directed that implementation of Wildlife Protection Act and Environment Protection Act should be done in letter and spirit. Doing this can solve half the problems, the court said.
Advocate Qadri had told the court that, “Under Environment Protection Act 1987, there is a need for proper demarcation, proper pony tracks, developed trekking system, stoppage of vehicular traffic, and demarcation of Thajavas Glacier. We all need to stand for the environment and this can happen when there is implementation of the Act on ground.”
Meanwhile directions were also passed to the State Pollution Control Board to submit an updated report on water and air pollution in Sonamarg, besides the manner of treatment of effluents.