Ban imposed on cooking in open, use of polythene in J&K's Patnitop hill resort

Jammu, Jun 7 (PTI) Authorities have imposed a ban on cooking in the open and use of polythene in the environmentally-sensitive Patnitop hill resort in Jammu and Kashmir's Udhampur district, officials said on Tuesday.

Chief Executive Officer, Patnitop Development Authority, Sher Singh ordered the ban and warned that fines will be imposed on violators.

In the order, Singh who is also the first class executive magistrate, said the hill resort had been witnessing a huge rush of tourists and a large number of tourists were seen cooking food, lighting fire and throwing garbage or waste in the forest areas which is detrimental to the ecosystem and can also result in major forest fires and human tragedy.

It has also been observed that tourists carry banned items like plastic, polythene and other plastic items and dump these in the open forest area posing environmental hazard, pollution as well as leading to chocked drains which creates a lot of nuisance and also damages the reputation of the resort, the authority and tourism department, Singh said.

To curb the blatant use of fire and use of polythene and other plastic materials, Singh, in exercise of powers conferred upon him under section 133 Cr PC imposed complete ban on cooking, lighting of fire, throwing of garbage or waste, use of polythene and other plastic materials in Patnitop and areas around.

The concerned wing of the PDA, forest and police departments have been asked to keep strict vigil and also have been authorised to impose fine on the violators, the order said.