Commissioner Secretary Forest Ecology and Environment department, Sanjeev Verma today visited district Ganderbal and took stock of the Wetlands of the district.
During the visit, the Commissioner Secretary was accompanied by the Deputy Commissioner Ganderbal, Krittika Jyotsna, ACR Ganderbal, Regional Wildlife Warden Kashmir, ACD, DFO Sindh Forest Division Ganderbal and other concerned.
The Commissioner/Secretary visited Ahan Sar, Waskura Sar and Manasbal lakes to have firsthand appraisal of the management of these water bodies. These three waterbodies are on the verge of being notified as wetlands under Wetland Management Rules of 2017.
While inspecting the management of these wetlands, DFO informed the Commissioner Secretary that the brief documents have already been prepared and submitted by the District Administration in this regard. The commissioner/secretary directed for preparation of management plan for these water bodies to undertake desiltation and deweeding works, for which he sought the collaboration of Revenue, Forest and Rural development departments in restoration of these wetlands to past glory.
While ascertaining the physical condition of the waterbodies, Commissioner Secretary exhorted that management plan for these wet lands shall be formulated containing all components to restore these wetlands to the pristine glory which will not only add to the aquatic and avifaunal diversity of the lakes but shall also enhance tourism potential of these areas.
Meanwhile, Commissioner Secretary interacted with the PRIs/locals and urged them to help administration in conservation of these wet lands as livelihood of people living on the edges of these wetlands depends to a large extent on the productivity of wetlands that provide a great variety of functions and benefits and may provide options for additional developments such as tourism.
He stressed for generating mass awareness among the people especially living along the peripheries of these water bodies regarding intrinsic natural values of wetlands and farmers shall be encouraged for using bio fertilizers instead of chemical fertilizers adding that the loss of the wetlands would be tantamount to losing their lifeline.