Despite spending Rs 850 Cr, Dal continues to be dull
Srinagar, Dec 21: Jammu and Kashmir government has spent over
Rs 850 crore on restoration of Dal Lake without any visible change of
improvement in the famed water body.
This has also
been corroborated by reports framed by various expert committees.
Dal Lake is
famous across the world and most of the tourists visit Srinagar to see the
famed water body. The government had started several projects designed to
infuse fresh life into Dal Lake. These projects had cost Rs 850 crores to the
government since 2002.
A major project
‘National Lake Conservation Programme’ was started in 2005 that cost government
Rs 300 crore. The second conservation and management programme ‘Prime
Minister’s Reconstruction Programme’ (PMRP) of 2010 cost government Rs 350
crore. The third project was for the
rehabilitation of the families dislocated from Dal and Nigeen Lake. However, there is no visible change on the
recent report of Pollution Control Board, the water quality has deteriorated
because of untreated sewage into Dal Lake.
“The lake is
facing main issues like untreated sewage and waste by people live in and around
the lake,” the report says.
The PCB has
submitted a report to government which showed presence of high levels of lead,
arsenic, copper, and cadmium affecting the aquatic life of the lake.
A study conducted
by Dr Shakil Ahmad Romshoo, who teaches at Kashmir University, reveals that 32%
of the lake falls under severe degradation and 48% under medium degradation
while as 20% of the lake waters are relatively clean.
multiple pressures from the unplanned urbanization, high population growth,
nutrient load from intensive agriculture and tourism,” it reads.
Earlier, the High
Court had also said that crores of rupees have been spent on Dal but no
“fruitful results” have come out.
immediate measures are necessary before the situation is rendered hopeless. It
is therefore, necessary to have an expert committee with most importantly the
vision and the experience of having undertaken issues which involve wide
spectrum, multi-dimensional assessment, evaluation and resolution,” the Court
Pollution Control Board, Rafi Ahmad said they have been continuously monitoring
the water quality of the lake. “PCB has also submitted recommendations to the
government about reasons of pollution,” he said.
Wani, a resident of Dal Lake, still remembers the time when lake water used to
be pure enough to be consumed by people for drinking.
“At that time, no
filtration or treatment was being done by the government to keep it clean. The
lake has deteriorated due to urbanization and encroachment,” he said.
Lakes and Water ways Development Authority (LAWDA), GM Dar said government was
making all efforts for restoration of Dal Lake. “There may not be much change
but government is now taking serious efforts for its restoration,” Dar said.