No dumping of waste at source of Jhelum in Verinag: High Court

SRINAGAR: Closing down a litigation related to the issue, the J&K High Court on Tuesday directed authorities to ensure that no encroachment or dumping of waste takes place at the source of Jhelum river in Verinag.
The court passed these directions after going through the report of Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Verinag Development Authority (VDA), which stated that departments of Revenue and of Irrigation and Flood Control were identifying spots where encroachment has taken place and will accordingly initiate action against the defaulters.
The report further mentioned that this matter of encroachment was already raised in another PIL which is pending before the High Court, titled “Noor-ul-Haq Vs State of J&K & Others”.
The court after taking note of the report observed that there is no point in running parallel proceedings on the matter.
“We deem it proper to close down the litigation with direction to authorities to ensure that no encroachment takes place at the very source,” the Division Bench of Justice Ali Mohammad Magrey and Justice Dhiraj Singh Thakur said.
Earlier, the court had taken suo motu cognizance of a letter dated 12 June, 2019, sent by the Greater Verinag Society, an NGO, which stated that the source of River Jhelum was being polluted and encroached with waste being dumped there.
“The inadequacy of drainage system and allied mechanism is going to harm the source of the water body,” the letter stated.
The letter was moved by Mohammad Shafi Pandit who raised alarm over the environmental degradation and pleaded before the court that timely action be taken to save the river.

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