Locals want ACB inquiry as 10,000 trees have been cut down
KD NEWS SERVICE
SRINAGAR, Mar 8:As J&K Pollution Control Committee has given a consent to set up a brick kiln in Rangeen Kultreh village of Chadoora in Budgam district some months back, the High Court of Jammu & Kashmir and Ladakh recently issued a notice to the concerned authorities for filing their response.
The court notice has been issued to Member Secretary Pollution Control Committee, Deputy Commissioner Budgam, District Officer PCC Budgam, Tehsildar Chadoora and Mughloo Brick Kiln asking them to file their response. By or before the next date of hearing in the matter that has been listed on March 17.
The aggrieved orchardists Abdul Gani Bhat and others had moved to High Court to seek judicial intervention against the order of the Member Secretary Pollution Control Committee who gave consent for the establishment of a brick kiln in favour of M/S Mughloo Brick Kiln.
The petitioners Abdul Gani Bhat and others challenged the consent order dated 24.11.2022 before High Court saying that Pollution Control Committee District officer Budgam on 12th March 2022 had refused to issue the consent order and other departments had also raised their serious concern over this issue.
High Court Justice Wasim Sadiq Nargal on March 2nd 2023 while hearing the case issued notices to the Member Secretary Pollution Control Committee , DC Budgam , District Officer Pollution Control Committee Budgam and Tehsildar Chadoora to explain their position.
Pertinently more than 1000 almond trees have been axed on the karewa land in Rangeen Kultreh in Budgam last year by some land owners who want to lease out their land for brick kilns as they claim that almond trees were not fetching them good revenue and brick kilns give them Rs 30,000 per year for a kanal of land
“We fail to understand that when the Pollution Control Committee field staff of Budgam in March last year didn’t give NOC for brick kilns and wrote an adverse report which we have produced before the High Court, what prompted the Member Secretary to issue a consent order in 9 months?” said the petitioner while talking to Kashmir Despatch.
He added that after the Member Secretary gave the consent order, some touts are now taking money from people so that more brick kilns would be set up. “We have developed apple, plum and pear orchards in the area and we can’t allow this disaster to happen. There are already two dozen brick kilns in the area and more brick kilns will destroy only the environment but it will be a threat to air traffic also as the airport and air force base is located nearby which comes within 3 to 4 kms aerial distance. We demand a probe by ACB also in this issue,” Abdul Gani, the petitioner in the case told Kashmir Despatch.
The local of Kultreh and adjoining villages in Chadoora have appealed DC Budgam , Air Force and other departments to look into the issue on merits