Rashid Paul

Keep labourers available during court visit: HC tells authorities

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Dumping of solid waste in Wular Lake…

Srinagar:  The J&K High Court on Friday directed the authorities to ensure availability of labourers for checking the veracity of the allegations of concealment of solid waste dumping in Wular Lake.

The court was hearing a PIL on dumping of 66.59 metric tons of solid and biomedical waste by government authorities in to the lake.

The direction followed a submission by Shafaqat Nazir, counsel for the petitioners that in view of the nature of controversy, a court visit was urgently necessary.

The lawyer informed a division bench “that after passing of the last order by this court, the respondents have illegally started filling-up of the garbage site and covered the same with soil”.

Hearing the petitioner’s statement the bench directed “the respondents shall ensure that the labour is available during the court visit in case digging is necessary to verify the correctness of the submissions”.

The court further directed M. A. Chashoo, Additional Advocate General J&K to coordinate with the Registrar General with regard to the Court visit and listed the matter on 1st of September, 2020.

The court in July had issued notices to central and state government authorities on dumping of solid waste in the lake and sought status reports from them.

A PIL had been filed on the matter by Central Auqaf Committee, Tarzoo-Dharnambal, North Kashmir.

The petitioners said “within the limits of Municipal Council Sopore about 66.59 Metric Tons of solid waste/garbage is produced every day which is directly dumped by Municipal Council Sopore into the Wular Lake”.

The area falls within the delineated periphery pillars of Wular Conservation and Management Authority (WUCMA) and Hygam-Ningli-Tarzoo Tourism Development Authority, they said.

Their petition said that India being a contracting party to Ramsar Convention is bound to conserve and preserve the Ramsar wetlands from any type of environmental degradation.

Wular has been notified as a Ramsar Wetland in 1990.

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