Rashid Paul

HC displeased over delay in finalization of Gulmarg master plan

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“Unrestrained entry of horses and ponies inside the resort is undesired”

Srinagar June 11: A two member committee of the High Court looking into the damage caused to the once pristine natural environs of the ski resort of Gulmarg has said that unrestrained entry of horses and ponies inside the Gulmarg is undesired.

A two member committee comprising registrar judicial, Muhammad Yousuf Wani and joint registrar Farooq Ahmad Bhat said that the unrestrained entry of horses and ponies inside the Gulmarg “does not seem to be fully needful.”

It said that the “environment of the resort is fraught with dangers which call for immediate attention to preserve this world famous skiing destination”.

The report further said  that Gulmarg is famous all over the world not because of five star hotels, Gondola and horse riding but for its location amidst forests and meadows.

Expressing its displeasure over the delay in preparation and finalization of the Gulmarg master plan, the High Court has already recorded that the “approach adopted” by the authorities concerned is “totally unaccepted.”

“If five years have been taken for preparation of the master plan what more can be said,” a division bench said in its order today while hearing a public interest litigation (PIL) about the conservation and preservation of eco-sensitive areas in Gulmarg.

Meanwhile, in its status report to the High Court, the Pollution Control Board has submitted that 14 Category-A hotels were inspected in by the end of the preceding year. “Four hotels were found functional and samples were collected and sent for analysis whereas in five hotels, sewage treatment plants were found frozen. There were no commercial activities in two hotels,” the PCB said.

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