Use SBM Gramin funds for Wetland conservation in Kashmir

NGT’s direction to Divisional Commissioner Kashmir

Srinagar Aug 28 (KNS): National Green Tribunal (NGT) has directed the Divisional Commissioner Kashmir to consider the suggestions made by petitioner regarding utilizing funds available under Swachh Bharat Mission Gramin (SBM-Gramin) so that solid waste management could be taken up in Kashmir’s wetlands on a regular basis. NGT’s principal bench’s order dated 27th August further says that suggestions be duly considered and acted upon to the extent found viable.
According to statement issued to KNS reads, the petition titled Dr Raja Muzaffar Bhat v/s J&K Govt was listed before Principal Bench of 4 members headed by Chairperson National Green Tribunal (NGT) Justice A K Goel on Aug 27th 2020. Petitioner Dr Raja Muzaffar Bhat filed response to the report submitted by JK Govt some time back and had given suggestions for collaboration between Wildlife Conservation Department and Rural Sanitation Department so that solid waste management around Hokersar wetland and adjoining villages Soibugh, Sharifabad and Hajibagh could be taken up.
“There are enough funds available under Swachh Bharat Mission Gramin (SBM Gramin) for such activities but unfortunately the money is not being utilized as no DPRs have been prepared by Govt in past “ reads the suggestions of the petitioner filed before NGT.
Petitioner Dr Raja Muzaffar Bhat has suggested that an effective watch and ward system needs to be made available by J&K Wildlife Conservation Department to prevent dumping of solid waste in and around Hokersar. He had urged NGT to direct the J&K Govt to spend funds available under Solid Liquid Resource Management programme of SBM Gramin.
“I also urged the NGT to appoint an independent Non Governmental Expert as Court Commissioner to facilitate the determination of the real questions in controversy and the false statements being made by the Municipal Committee Bandipora wherein they claim that municipal waste was not being dumped at Zalwan area which is not true at all “ said Dr Raja Muzaffar

NGT order further reads :

“Let further action be taken by the joint Committee headed by the Divisional Commissioner, Kashmir. The above suggestions be duly considered and acted upon, to the extent found viable. We also direct that the National Wetlands Committee may compile data of status of compliance of environmental norms in respect of all significant wetlands in the country to ensure remedial action. The State PCBs/PCCs and State/UT Wetland Authorities in India may give the status of management of wetlands in their respective States to the Secretary, MoEF&CC within three months. On that basis a joint Committee of the Secretary and Chairman CPCB may give a consolidated report to this Tribunal before the next date by e-mail at preferably in the form of searchable PDF/ OCR Support PDF and not in the form of Image PDF “, the statement said (KNS)


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