High Court allows integrated development of Hazratbal shrine

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Srinagar: Allowing Integrated Development of holy Hazratbal shrine on the bank of world famous Dal Lake under National Mission on Pilgrimage Rejuvenation and Spiritual Driver (NMPRSD), Jammu and Kashmir High Court (HC) said that Monitoring Committee will continue to take steps to preserve the water bodies.

Meanwhile, Amicus Curie Advocate Zaffar Ahmad Shah said that court has played an important role in saving Dal lake and as per the opinion of experts it is because of the court interference life of the Dal lake which otherwise was 40-50 years has increased to more than three hundred years.

A division bench of HC, comprising Justice Muzaffar Hussain Attar and Justice Ali Muhammad Magrey allowed the government to proceed with NMPRSD after Additional Advocate General (AAG) M A Beigh made a submission that if court will not issue orders, the money released for carrying out the Integrated Development of holy Hazratbal shrine will lapse.     

The court was hearing a Public Interest Litigation on Conservation of Dal lake and other water bodies in Kashmir.

The court was informed that the sixth meeting of the Monitoring Committee for conservation of famed water body in the city was held on December 19. However, Advocate Shah drew attention of the court to the issues raised and considered in the meeting. 

After hearing AAG and Advocate Shah the court said that it is firm belief of the court that the Monitoring Committee will continue to take steps to preserve the water bodies, more particularly, the Dal lake, which as is being said, the crown in the Jewel of Kashmir, otherwise known as heaven on earth. 

The court asked its Registry to serve copy of the Court Commissioners report to the Monitoring Committee, which has been ordered to consider the report and expedite decisions required to be taken especially about acquisition of land.     

Shah while arguing the case submitted that efforts should be intensified to maintain inter-generation equities adding that water bodies, particularly lakes are important source of drinking water.

He said the valley is undergoing dry spell which has therefore created compulsive reason to ensure that existing water-bodies are protected maintained and saved from contamination and pollution so as to be used as primary source of safe drinking water.

Advocate Shah also submitted that IIT Roorkee has prepared a vision document, which is under consideration of Monitoring Committee and the views of the Scientific Committee need to be obtained.

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