Scientific panel calls for creation of artificial wetlands, de-weeding to save Dal 

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A Kashmiri boatman rows his Shikara, a traditional boat, as snow covered mountains are seen in the backdrop of the Dal Lake in Srinagar on March 7,2010.The Jammu-Srinagar highway was closed to traffic on March 6,morning following landslides at Panthal in Ramban district.The highway is the main road link between the Kashmir Valley and the rest of the country.AFP PHOTO/Rouf BHAT
Srinagar:  A Scientific Advisory Committee, constituted for conservation and management of Dal lake, has called for creation of artificial wetlands at the mouth of the tributaries and drains entering the water body to stop untreated sewage from going directly into the lake.
In its recent meeting, the SAC said that the creation of the wetlands would, to a great extent, help arrest the flow of “nutrient-rich water” directly and thereby will helping saving the lake, a flagship of Kashmir’s tourism.
Headed by Dr. A R Yousuf, former member of National Green Tribunal, the committee holds quarterly meeting and convey report on different aspects of conservation of the Dal to the monitoring committee headed by state’s Chie Secretary for taking necessary action on various issues highlighted by it.
The meeting also resolved that the J&K Lakes and Waterways Development Authority (LAWDA) will carry out de-weeding in the summer season in addition to the practice already carried out in spring and autumn. The members also felt that the spread of lily need to be stopped and as such shall be uprooted manually and mechanically.
As per the minutes of meeting, a copy of which lies with INS, the SAC felt that all the conservation measures undertaken, in the end, ought to reflect in the improvement of the water quality of the lake.
Accordingly it called for assessing water quality of the lake on regular basis with precision so that the clear picture emerges for success of various steps taken for the conservation.
The SAC has recommended to LAWDA to take immediate steps to procure latest equipments and analytical probes for assessing the concentration of various physic-chemical parameters of the lake water, lake sediments as well as the Sewerage Treatment Plants (STPs).
Some members felt that there was need of assessing the presence of pesticide residues in the lake water, as large quantities of pesticides are being used in the immediate catchment of the water body.
Subsequently, the SAC resolved that the LAWDA shall approach SKAUST-K for extending help for estimation of pesticides in the lake waters.

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