Adeela Hameed

Natural Resources are the Real Currency of Emerging Times

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Kashmir has been the center of attention for aspects other than political fiascoes and strategic counter-attacks between two warring nations. It, was and, is the physical manifestation of beauty, splendour, and all that is natural. Given it is placed amid the Himalayas, surrounded and filled to the brim with majestic peaks, while rivers rush forth as veins to nourish every inch of this land, Kashmir, in itself, is −in ways more than one −self-sustaining. Four seasons a year, diverse floral and faunal population, without a large human life to encumber its geology, I must say, only a few regions across the globe are as blessed as our Valley.

We might take it for granted, but Kashmir provides for its people all through the year. Every summer’s harvest reaps benefits from the strong winter seeds sown. Similarly, each autumn is benefited by buds planted in spring. Rainfall, snow-melt, high sun, red moons−each feature of our Valley flocks to form an environment, pristine and sustainable. Even though many might not be aware of or recognize this, Kashmir has never let Kashmiris down. We usually measure wealth in terms of money or gold, but the real currency is our land. What it brings forth, what it pours down, or what it provides, everyday of each day in our life.

People might dissent or exhibit varying statuses, but wealth−this wealth of paper money and precious stones−does not last long. Money does, although, provide food or clothes but without our land proffering these resources, money is just useless paper. What we, humans, must understand is that natural resources, readily available and scattered all through the world, cannot be taken for granted or irresponsibly used in exchange for a few bundles of cash.

What we expend is far too precious, in the long run, compared to what we betray it for. Forests, rivers, fertile land, lakes, marshes, sandy deserts, oceans, in fact, everything is for our benefit. When used responsibly, it will prosper and re-sustain, renew itself. Again for our benefit. Instead of hoarding currencies viable or valuable for just a matter of time, people should focus on preserving resources which will remain invaluable forever.

Respect and preservation of resources is clearly and vividly mentioned in the Qur’an as well:

“Do you not see that Allah sends down rain from the sky and makes it flow as springs [and rivers] in the earth; then He produces thereby crops of varying colors; then they dry and you see them turned yellow; then He makes them [scattered] debris. Indeed in that is a reminder for those of understand.”

(Qur’an, 39:21)

Kashmir is blessed to receive such bountiful assets from nature. And it is our responsibility to keep these assets safe−from mindless destruction and annihilation.

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