HC Seeks Follow-up on Decisions for Better Disaster Preparedness

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Srinagar—The Jammu and Kashmir High Court on Monday sought status regarding follow-up on decisions taken by the government for better preparedness to tackle any kind of natural calamity in the state.

“We have examined the minutes of meeting. Several decisions have been taken. Further follow up action be taken by the concerned authorities and the status report be filed by next date of hearing,” a division bench of the headed by Chief Justice Badar Durez Ahmad said after pursuing minutes of a meeting submitted by the Commissioner Secretary Disaster Management, Relief, Rehabilitation and Re-construction Department.

The court also sought outcome of a committee constituted for updating the J&K disaster management policy.

“A committee has been constituted for the purpose and has been requested to submit the report within 15 days. Status report be filed before the next date of hearing,” the court said.

On previous hearing, the court had noticed that the J&K State Disaster Management Policy, which was notified through SRO-218 on 22 May 2017, was actually prepared in 2012.

“Some of the figures in the policy have been up-dated but the entire policy needs to be up-dated because it does not reflect the experience of 2014 floods,” the court observed and had directed that the J&K State Disaster Management Policy be up-dated to include all the events and further developments as on date.

With regard to the authority constituted under the J&K water resources (Regulation & Management) Act 2013, Advocate General informed the court that a proposal was ready and awaits next cabinet meeting, which has not taken place till the last date of hearing. The meeting is stated to be held in near future.

On previous hearing, the court also noted the requirement for demarcation for national parks, wetlands, wildlife sanctuaries and conservation reserves.

“The concerned authorities shall immediately carry out demarcation of the National Parks, Wildlife Sanctuaries, Conservation reserves and the wetland reserves,” the court had said. A status report was filed which was taken on record by the court.

The court had also directed the authorities to submit a report to re-establish the network between the Jhelum, the streams, the wetlands and the lakes and to undertake immediate exercise in that behalf immediately. “The Commissioner- Secretary to the Government, Public Health Engineering- Irrigation and Flood Control Department was to submit its plan of action and action taken. That has not happened,” the court said. Advocate General submitted that same will be submitted before next date of hearing and court allowed his request.

 

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