Kullu, January 18
Temporary roads constructed on the Tirthan riverbed at Sai Ropa, Nagini and Hamini have disturbed the natural flow of the river in Banjar subdivision. The roads were reportedly constructed using JCB machines to transport construction and other material. The Tirthan valley is a gateway to the eco-fragile Great Himalayan National Park region, which is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
No action against offenders
- These makeshift roads on the riverbed raise a question mark on the functioning of the mining, fisheries and forest departments, besides the administration.
- Kullu valley faces the threat of ecological degradation due to haphazard quarrying and mining on the riverbeds of the Beas, Parbati and their tributaries.
- Forest guards, police post in-charges, junior engineers of the PWD and the Jal Shakti Vibhag, BDOs, ACFs, SHOs and DSPs can challan offenders, but they often escape action.
These roads raise a question mark on the functioning of the mining, fisheries and forest departments, besides the district administration and the police.
The Tirthan valley is home to Himalayan trout. This fish moves upstream and downstream during the breeding season. Disturbing the natural course of the river will have an adverse impact on its survival and reproduction. It may perish completely if illegal mining in the river goes unchecked. Other aquatic species are also being adversely affected due to such man-made blockades, he adds.
A local resident alleges that such mass-scale violation of rules is being done by tampering with the river course but nobody has tried to curb the menace. The authorities concerned should initiate action so that natural resources could be preserved. A regular vigil should be maintained and the authorities concerned should not be waiting for complaints to be filed.
Kullu valley faces the threat of ecological degradation due to haphazard quarrying and mining on the riverbeds of the Beas, Parbati and their tributaries. All forest guards, police posts in-charges, junior engineers of the PWD and the Jal Shakti Vibhag, block development officers, ACFs, SHOs and DSPs, including officials of 39 other government departments are empowered to check illegal mining and challan offenders but miscreants usually evade action.
The police frequently carry out inspections and penalise those involved in illegal mining but the offenders do not hesitate to repeat the offence. Environmentalist Abhishek Rai and others have demanded strict action against the offenders so that such illegal acts are not repeated.