SRINAGAR: In a long argument debated before court by senior counsel Zaffar Shah, the counsel stated on Wednesday, “We have all failed to conserve Dal Lake, and the responsibility lies on our shoulders for its deterioration.”
Counsel Shah, acting as Amicus Curiae in a public interest litigation (PIL) related to the conservation of the Dal Lake, submitted before the division bench of Acting Chief Justice Alok Aradhe and Justice M K Hanjura that court directives are not being implemented as they should have been.
He pointed out that from the date of institution of the PIL in 2002 to the present date, the court has passed a number of directions, but on the ground, “when we analyse the condition of the Lake, we all have failed in restoring it”.
Shah further argued that it is a wastage of time and money when the desired output is not there. He pointed out that in 2005, the Dole Demb project was initiated, but to this date, nothing has happened.
Shah pointed out that cosmetic solutions won’t save the Lake. “We have to understand the cause and its effects, and that can only be understood by the experts in the field. We have to come with permanent solutions, rather than putting things here and there,” he said.
After hearing the Amicus Curiae, the court was convinced by the argument put forth and listed the PIL for hearing on June 4 for necessary action.
Meanwhile Advocate Nadeem Qadri moved an application before court related to the restoration of Khushalsar and Gilsar lakes.
He pointed out that a Rs 300 crore proposal for the restoration of these small lakes, which are interconnected with the Dal Lake, is quite surprising.
He made submission that 19 springs have been identified in these lakes. During the campaign carried by Environmental Policy Group, one spring was cleared of all encroachment by spending just an amount of Rs 700. He further stated that if we put the cost at around Rs 1,000 per spring, that means we can clean all 19 springs at the rate of Rs 19,000.
He further pointed out that for saving our water bodies, it is not necessary that we spend huge amounts of money but we need collective effort from all walks of life.
At the end, he sought the court’s permission to file a report on Khushalsar and Gilsar lakes. The court accepted the request and directed him to file the same.