Srinagar: Closing a Public Interest Litigation (PIL), the High Court of J&K and Ladakh said that “Srinagar Airport has been upgraded to a maximum level and all systems necessary have been installed as approved by the Air Force”. The HC had initiated the PIL on its own motion.
“It may be noted that Srinagar Airport is not a civilian airport but a defence airport and, therefore, its up-gradation and development is dependent upon the requirement of the defence forces and the civilian activity on the airport cannot be allowed to interfere with or obstruct the defence activity at the airport,” said a division bench of Chief Justice Pankaj Mithal and Justice Sanjay Dhar said.
The court said there was no need for it to monitor upgradation of the airport and closed the PIL.
The court said this after it observed that the orders passed by it from time to time as well as the action taken reports filed from time to time by the authorities would establish that the Srinagar Airport has been upgraded to a maximum level and all systems necessary have been installed as approved by the Air Force.
As far as the up-gradation of the Srinagar Airport was concerned, the court said, there remains no further requirement for it to continue to monitor the upgradation of the Srinagar Airport. “The same is left for the authorities to do the needful as necessary in accordance with the requirement and the policy decision,” it said. With regard to the obstruction caused by the smoke emitted from the brick kilns located in the vicinity of the Airport, the Court said: “The brick kiln owners may be permitted to operate their brick kilns within the prohibited area provided they possess a valid licence which stand renewed for the relevant period subject to their furnishing an undertaking on affidavit that they shall use furnaces which will not cause smoke hazard such as oil fired or electrical furnaces or those which are run on fuel which do not emit smoke”.
Based on the statement by the owners, the court directed that they would not operate their brick kiln during the winter season from 1st November every year to 31 March next year.
The court said it would be open for the authorities to keep a constant vigil upon the brick kilns so as they may not violate the terms and conditions of the licence or the undertaking.
For violating terms, the court said, appropriate legal action should be immediately be taken against them.