The condition of water bodies in Kashmir calls for immediate attention. Much has been written on it, and there are piles of news stories that have been carried by this newspaper on the deteriorating condition of water bodies. In the concerned government offices we must have many files buried under dust.
There are many activist groups that have contributed a lot in sensitising people, or in activating the government officials, to take some practical steps. Though there is no significant improvement in the quality of these water bodies, but it would have been worse had the media, civil society, and officials not contributed their little efforts. Likewise we have the judiciary that has, on many occasions, made the real difference.
An intervention form the High Court in any such matter has resulted in a change on ground. So it is a step ahead, and a very big one, if the High Court intervenes in any such matter. The news that the High Court of J&K and Ladakh has sought a report from Wular Conservation and Management Authority (WUCMA) attesting to the timeframe within which over 380 kanals of encroached land of Wular lake would be retrieved, is a reason to hope that things will start moving in case of Wular conservation. This lake has been in news for very long because of its utility, and image.
Those who know its importance have been very vocal on the need for its conservation. Among many other things what poses a grave danger to this lake is the encroachments. It squeezes the lake, and also contributes to pollution. If the lake is really freed of the encroachments it would be an achievement, and would contribute to strengthening the sections of society that want these water bodies saved.
One can a only hope that the matter is followed till things are made to happen on ground. We cannot afford to see this lake dying. The authorities that mange lakes in Kashmir should work hard to free these lakes of encroachments and clan the water of toxic substances. These lakes are our lungs; the valley breathes here.