Being part and parcel of the environmental prestige and glory, two water bodies in Srinagar- Chuntkul and Brari Nambal - have been the victims of decades long official apathy, and bad actions by a section of greedy people.
While these people damaged the water bodies by pollution and by encroachments, the successive governments showed non- serious approach in addressing the grave issue.
The authorities failed to plan and execute with sincerity effective conservation measures for restoring the two water bodies.
Even as some half hearted, cosmetic measures were taken sometimes in past, but those were suddenly abandoned and not completed. The results are obvious- The water bodies are in a very pathetic condition, and according to environmental experts at the verge of extinction if immediately some concrete steps are not taken.
While the government needs to take corrective measures, it is also the responsibility of people to see what went wrong.
Both Brabri Nambal and Chuntkul are among Kashmir’s invaluable environmental assets and need to be protected from pollution and encroachments.
Because of the vested interests of the people, who have encroached upon the water bodies in past and raised structures, or who have been dumping garbage into those, Kashmir should not lose its environmental glory further.
Both the government and people have to play their roles. Any delay can prove more disastrous for the water bodies and Kashmir will lose even whatever has been left now.
It is a fact that one cannot wholly blame the present official set up for the present sad state of affairs as the deterioration in water bodies has not occurred overnight.
The callousness of people and government for decades has created this messy scenario on environment front.
But those at the helm of affairs at present need to play a pro-active role to save the water bodies from pollution and encroachment.
Experts say that the restoration of the two water bodies is also important for the overall environmental health of Dal Lake, which was also the victim of the greed among a section of masses.
The officials in past had also turned a blind eye to what was happening in Dal - may be due to political considerations or some other reasons.
While Dal lake is rightly being given due attention for some time now and more needs to be done in this direction, Brari Nambal and Chuntkul too deserve the required attention with effective and result oriented measures.