Wednesday, 16 September 2015

Helicopter services to Kedarnath

To reach Kedarnath one either needs to trek or uses helicopter, since there is no road connection to the shrine. The road connection could not be made due to the problem in getting the forest clearance as this zone falls under sanctuary. The helicopter service is under operation for those who need fast track journey or for old pilgrims, physically weak / handicapped etc. The helicopters which take the journey from start point to the shrine fly over sanctuary. Few people suggest that this activity is harmful for flora and fauna thriving in that ecosystem. . In this connection a group of people connected with environmental protection expressed its concern over the looming threat to the wildlife species in that ecosystem to green tribunal and asked to seek the response from Environment Ministry and Uttarakhand government.
The National Green Tribunal sought clarification about the threat on the wildlife due the operations of helicopter for Kedarnath shrine.

As per the forest officials, the helicopter services are severely affecting the eco-system and wildlife of this zone. One NGO claims that a forest official has written on the adverse effect of the helicopter services on the ecosystem and the wild life of the Kedarnath sanctuary. The animals like musk deer and Himalayan tahr (wild goat) are being forced to leave their natural habitat. The forest officials say that no consent has been taken from forest department for these helicopter operations and the activity is not legally authorised. Government has been putting enormous energy to save these wild lives and also enacted laws in order to avoid the danger of the extinction of these animals.
The NGT has sought explanation from the Ministry of Environments and Forests, the state government National Board of Wild Life and others. The bench is headed by the NGT Chairperson Justice S Kumar. The date was on 2nd Sep 2015 for the hearing and the matter is still under consideration.
The NGT has sought explanation from the Ministry of Environment and Forests, the state government National Board of Wild Life and others. The bench is headed by the NGT Chairperson Justice S Kumar. The date was on 2nd Sep 2015 for the hearing and still the matter is to be resloved.