A ticking bomb!

Greater Kashmir

It is the responsibility of the state to do ample research in the changing weather pattern and take subsequent corrective measures

After the September 2014 floods, we are presently confronting another serious, though related, ecological problem in the shape of cloudbursts, hailstorm and flash-floods.

Unlike the floods which usually give some amount of time to the people to save their lives and movable properties— the hazards involved notwithstanding — the cloudbursts, hailstorm and flash-floods are sudden, abrupt and largely unpredictable. Although, very little could actually be done to save the life and property of the people from this Nature’s fury, yet it could not be a reasonable excuse for our inaction nor could we feign ignorance about scores of such studies that have time and again forewarned us about our collective peril should we fail to take protective measures. A realization, slowly but surely, has dawned on the world we live in that the environment protection is not an option but a compulsion.

A state action plan report on ‘Climate Change of Jammu and Kashmir’ has blamed the rise in average temperature in the state for frequent cloudbursts. According to Indian Meteorological Department, Kashmir has recorded 1.45 degree Celsius rise in its average temperatures, while the Jammu region has marked 2.32 degree Celsius.

The question is; have we been active to take measures to mitigate this disturbing environmental situation? The rise in the temperatures around the world is largely ascribed to the human action in the sphere of economic development. But in Kashmir, which nowhere figures in the economic development indices, the problem chiefly stems from the political inaction and executive expediency.

The three chief apparent reasons of environmental pollution in Kashmir—large scale illegal cleansing of forests, unchecked emissions by moribund vehicles mostly of the security agencies, and unregulated tourist traffic to ecologically fragile and environmentally sensitive places— is a telltale sign of this political inaction and executive expediency. For our lapse to act, perhaps the Nature has turned furious. We must understand that the wellbeing of the humankind depends more on the quality of environment than on the economic development.

It is a responsibility of the state to sit up and do ample amount of research in the changing weather pattern in Kashmir so that subsequent corrective measures are taken to prevent further deterioration of our environment. The sooner we begin the better it is! Otherwise, this ticking bomb may explode someday to our collective peril.