SRINAGAR: The high court of JK, and Ladakh has stated that every water source in the UT of JK and Ladakh “is and shall remain the property of the government.”
Live Law reported that the development came after a bench headed by Justice Rajesh Oswal on Tuesday dismissed a plea filed by the residents of the village Qasba Yar, District Shopian, seeking directions upon the administration not to change, divert or take any water from Yari Kohal, a river flowing through their village.
“Section 3 of the Jammu and Kashmir Water Resources (Regulation and Management) Act, 2010 clearly prescribes that every water source in the State is property of the Government and any proprietary ownership, riparian or usage right on such water resources vested in any individual, group of individuals or any other body, corporation, company, society or community shall, from the date of commencement of the Act, be deemed to have been terminated and vested with the Government,” the court said.
The court observed that the petitioners have no vested right to demand any particular amount of water, particularly when the respondents have already determined the requirement of different villages.
The court held that the action of the respondents for reviving the canal in order to cater to the needs of other villages cannot be termed as illegal, unauthorized, and without any justification.
The villagers had stated that Yari Kohal is the sole source of irrigation for their agricultural land and the respondents, without any authority or valid reason, had initiated the construction of a diversion of Kohal through the Irrigation Division Shopian. Yari Kohal has a limited water supply, which is only enough for the residents of Qasba Yar village, they had argued.
Based on these findings of law the bench found the petition devoid of any merit and dismissed the same.