HC Asks CTP: Are Public Parks Adequate in Srinagar 

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Srinagar—The Jammu and Kashmir High Court on Thursday sought a report from Chief Town Planner as to whether the existing gardens and parks are adequate in this summer capital of the state.  

 

Hearing a Public Interest Litigation, a division bench of Chief Justice Badar Durrez Ahmed and Justice Ali Mohammad Magrey also arrayed Managing Director J&K Housing Board and Chief Town Planner Kashmir as respondents in the PIL, initiated on a letter sent to Chief Justice by incumbent chairperson of SHRC.  

 

The court also directed the Managing Director Housing Board to file a status report, indicating the parks and gardens which are maintained by the Board.

 

Treating the letter, written by Justice (retd) Bilal Nazki to the present Chief Justice as a PIL, the division bench had previously arrayed Commissioner Secretaries of tourism and Housing & Urban Development Department, Director Floriculture, deputy commissioner Srinagar, VC SDA and commissioner SMC as respondents to the PIL and sought their response.

 

The letter has highlighted complete lack of parks and green spaces in this summer capital of the state and drew the attention of the court to need for identifying and earmarking area in each locality of Srinagar for development of a park/green space/urban forest and set a time line within which such work is undertaken and completed by authorities.  

 

It calls for identifying encroachments of earmarked conservations zones for parks/green spaces and forthwith clearance of such encroachments.

 

The letter calls for avoiding “at all costs”, permissions for conversion of land use from conservation zone reserved for parks, green spaces or urban forest to residential or commercial etsablishments.

 

“The issues by the former chief justice in his letter are very important to each and every resident of the cities of Srinagar and Jammu. The State Government, it appears has ignored the pertinent issues raised by a dignitary of the status of former Chief Justice, which is clear from the facts that the government has not even care to respond to the communication of the high court,” the court had observed. 

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