Jammu: Chief Executive Officer of the Patnitop Development Authority (PDA), Sher Singh who also happens to be the Executive Magistrate Ist Class, on Friday imposed “complete ban’’ on cooking and lighting of fire among other things at the famous tourist resort of Patnitop and areas around it.
The other things prohibited by him include throwing of garbage/waste, use of polythene and other plastic material etc. The ban has been imposed by Singh in exercise of the powers conferred upon him as an Executive Magistrate, First Class, under Section 133 of CrPC.
The ban follows blatant use of fire and use of polythene and other plastic material in the environment sensitive zone and world famous resort which has been witnessing huge rush of tourists. “The tourists were seen cooking food, lighting fire and throwing garbage/waste in the forest areas which is detrimental to the forest ecosystem and can also result into major forest fire and could also lead to major tragedy,’’ he said.
He also observed that tourists carry banned items like plastic and polythene which they litter in the open forest area raising the risk of wildfire. These acts can create environmental hazards, pollution, choking of lanes/drains besides creating a lot of nuisance and damaging the reputation of the resort as well as the Authority/tourism department, he added.
DFO Batote/Udhampur, Deputy Director Forest Protection Force, SHO Kud/Batote, Khilafwarzi Wing of PDA, have been asked to keep strict vigil in the area.
Assistant Director Tourism National Highway, Batote has been appointed as Nodal Officer to coordinate among all concerned and monitor the exercise.