Spread over 7.50 Kms, Hokersar, a natural wetland situated in the outskirts of Srinagar is home to migratory birds. During last season, six lakh migratory birds which included grey leg geese, mallard, ducks, pochards, peasant tail Jasana came from Siberia, China, Central Asia and North Europe and had stayed in the wetland.
There is threat to wetland. Locals claim that the water entering from Doodganga stream has posed major threat to the wetland. While talking to Minister for Forests, Ecology and Environment, Mian Altaf Ahmad, they demanded that in order to bring back the pristine glory of the wetland there should be either diversion or stoppage of the water.
Mian Altaf Wednesday visited Hokersar to take stock of taken for the beautification of the wetland besides on-going development works coming up in and around it.
“It is our collective responsibility to safeguard the wetland for posterity,” Altaf said and warned people not to make any attempt of encroach on wetland.
He further said those who will commit this mistake would have to face the legal action as per standing guidelines of Supreme Court.
Altaf during his visit was informed that Rs. 15 lakh have been expended on the construction of office complex of wildlife department so far against the estimated cost of Rs. 30 lakh while on construction of staff quarters Rs. 16 lakh stands incurred out of Rs 32 lakh earmarked for the project.
Wetland apart, locals face problems. While raising the problems of residents of the area, local MLA, Irfan Shah who accompanied minister apprised Altaf and demanded installation of lights on 3 km long Zainakot- Gund Hasibhat bund besides its macadamising road to facilitate the public moment, particularly during night hours. MLA also pleaded for granting ownership rights to those who have occupied the land since 1947.
The Minister directed concerned to prepare a project for installation of solar lights besides developing cycle track on the bund.