PIL on conservation of water bodies in JK

Greater Kashmir

Amicus Curiae suggests setting up of full-fledged deptt

Srinagar, Aug 28: Advancing arguments on a Public Interest Litigation seeking conservation and preservation of Wular lake, Senior Counsel and Amicus Curiae, Zafar Ahmad Shah suggested that the government should consider setting up of a full-fledged department for preservation and conservation of all water bodies here.
“ It is the high time when the State should consider setting up of a full-fledged department for preservation and conservation of water bodies in the whole State rather than creating a body which is locally assigned the work of a particular Lake like LAWDA and WUCMA”  Shah told the court.
A division bench comprising Chief Justice M M Kumar and Justice Muhammad Yaqoob Mir asked the Amicus Curiae to file suggestions to the report filed by the Chief Executive Officer, WUCMA particularly with regard to the qualification and suitability of the staff a week before the next date of hearing after the Amicus sought time.  
The Amicus Curiae suggested the court that the staff for restoration of Wular lake with WUCMA should have qualifications which answer the nature of work required to be undertaken. “The staff with any qualification or belonging to the Forest may not be fully equipped to take care of restoration of water bodies like Wular Lake” he told the court.
In the last order the court had asked the government to create 225 posts and two months’ time was given to it.
“However, the status report by WUCMA in terms of the earlier order dated 06 05-2013 seems to suggest that the matter is at proposal stage and Administrative Department (Forests) has been requested to intimate immediate minimum requirement of staff to be deployed in WUCMA till the regular creation of 225 posts and requirement of staff for carrying out execution work during the financial year 2013-14 working session” the court said.
It said, however, WUCMA has formulated and submitted proposal to Administrative Department (Forest) on 13.08.2012. “It seems that WUCMA is being supplied the human resource from the Forest Department and even in the proposed organization set up the qualifications which have been proposed for various Officers are from Conservation of Forests” the court said. The court said perusal of the last order shows that Department of National River Conservation which is a Directorate working under the Environment and Forests, Central Government was requested to identify a suitable person specialized and expert in water bodies to depute him at Srinagar to oversee the implementation of Wullar Lake Project.  “S A Makroo, Assistant Solicitor General, states that some more time is required to do the needful” the court said.
The court said in the last order Kashmir University Vice Chancellor was requested to suggest a suitable name of an expert from the Varsity who might have dealt with various research projects. However, it seems that a copy of this order has not been sent to V-C KU Talat Ahmad. “The officer is directed to do the needful” the court said. Advocate General M I Qadri defended the state