The authorities in Kashmir do not appear to place a high premium on protecting the environment, as if they did, authorization would not have been given to these cement companies to operate so close to the Dachigam wildlife sanctuary. If environmental preservation had been the priority, then we wouldn’t be seeing the government and other relevant agencies watch in silence as the self-centred owners of these cement factories continue their destruction, which is, among other things, displacing the local wildlife. There is more: The Saffron fields that gave this place its name are now rapidly turning into lifeless deserts as a result of these cement plants and the mining taking place in and around. The damage is severe, and the government has no choice but to act firmly.
The government needs to act right now to make sure that these cement firms are held responsible for their activities and that they follow all applicable environmental standards. Given the severity of the environmental repercussions, in the first place, the government needs to shut down these factories right away. Also, more money must be spent on repairing the environment’s damage since the government must refocus its efforts and take action to safeguard the environment, particularly in sensitive regions like Kashmir.
It has to be understood that environmental preservation and endangered species conservation are interdependent. The government should make sure that its priorities reflect the requirements of both the populace and the environment and only then can we say that it is dedicated to environmental preservation and protection while it must be stated that there should be no justification for not taking action against those who violate the law. The National Green Tribunal also needs to move quickly to punish these individuals—who are nothing more than land grabbers—for going above and beyond to satisfy their own, abjectly selfish needs at the expense of the environment.
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