Dehradun, July 16, 2015
Chief Minister Harish Rawat has urged the Union Environment Ministry to bring the state rivers under the jurisdiction of the Irrigation Department, which, at present, are under the jurisdiction of the Forest Department.
Harish Rawat expressed this view while meeting Union Minister of State for Environment and Forests Prakash Javadekar in New Delhi yesterday. Rawat also asserted that a policy should be made for the removal of rubble from rivers, which were a major hindrance to flood control efforts.
Rawat also backed systemic felling of pine trees in Uttarakhand and highlighted its adverse impact on the region’s eco system. He called for replacing pine trees with the ones producing broad leaves. The Chief Minister also questioned about the blanket ban on plastic use at Hari ki Pauri and a ban on the use of polythene bags in Haridwar.
He argued that pilgrims from all over the country used plastic cans to carry Gangajal and the blanket ban on plastics would cause them immense inconvenience.
While seeking a review of the ban, Rawat said the ban on plastics at Hari Ki Pauri was causing anger and discomfort among local businessmen and pilgrims. Referring to the Gangotri Eco Sensitive Zone notification, the CM said as per the directions of the Supreme Court, there was already Bhagirathi River Valley Development Authority in the state in accordance with the notification. Thus, there was no need for an eco-sensitive zone notification.
Union minister Javadekar on his part promised to give due consideration to the state’s concerns.
Courtesy: The Tribune

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