Pollen Menace

Pollen Menace
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Pollen, emanating usually and often times, from poplar and robinia(kikkar) trees, has become a menace in Kashmir. Ensconced in a fine cottony substance, pollen seeds are so light that these float in the air very easily. If this were the only problem or issue associated with the floating in the air of pollen seeds, then it would not constitute a hazard. But, floating pollen seeds , not only cause allergies, like hay fever, in people but also can exacerbate and intensify existing ailments like asthma and /or other related respiratory diseases. The problem of floating pollen seeds becomes acute during spring time in Kashmir; it is so widespread that there appears to be no escape from this menace. The reasons for the drastic increase in pollen in Kashmir accrue from the widespread plantation of poplar trees across the length and breadth of Kashmir and their wanton proliferation thereof largely for lucrative and commercial reasons. Even though there is apparently a government order to decrease and check the rise in the growth and plantation of poplar trees, nothing substantive has been done about it. As a result, the pollen menace continues unabated. In the final analysis, anything that impinges upon public welfare and health, must be prohibited. Given that problems that free floating pollen causes, eradicating this menace must assume primacy in the eyes of the administration. Yes, there can and might be resistance to cutting down or using means that would reduce the population of poplar trees (and robinia too), but a mix of incentives and disincentives, could suffice to eradicate this menace. At issue is public health which is more important than the commercial opportunities that plantation of poplar trees present and offer. Moreover, the people who actually plant these trees must be informed and educated about the public health hazard that this kind of plantation presents. Besides action by the administration, social pressure can and must be generated, so the planting poplars, wantonly and randomly becomes rather taboo. This practice, before it becomes unmanageable, must be discouraged and disincentivized for the sake of overall public health and welfare. There does not appear to be any other alternative other than chopping off, downsizing and eliminating the widespread practice of poplar plantation. Let public health assume precedence over a gratuitous practice whose effects are only harmful and deleterious and let the process of stymieing and eradicating this menace be instituted now.