Supreme Court pulls Uttarakhand government on forest fires, calls it 'Lackadaisical'

The forest fire in Uttarakhand has destroyed over 1,437 hectares of forest land since November.

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Top Indian News Desk
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Courtesy: X (NDRF)

The Supreme Court on Wednesday pulled up the Uttarakhand government regarding forest fires and expressed displeasure over the approach to handling the wildfires, framing it as ‘Lackadaisical’. The Chief Secretary of Uttarakhand has been asked to be present personally before the bench headed by Justice B R Gavai on May 17.

The top court further underlined why no steps were taken, even though multiple action plans were prepared. According to the sources, over 1,437 hectares of forest land have been affected since November, which has not only destroyed the land but also shrouded the nearby regions in smoke and haze, which is triggering the mental health of the residents. However, the recent rain has provided some kind of respite from the fire.

Why forest fire staff was assigned poll duty: SC

While coming heavily on the Uttarakhand government, the top court also asked the counsel why forest fire officials were deployed on poll duty. The court also lashed out at the saying that the forest has destroyed 40% of the forest, which is still not doused.

Responding to the same, the counsel further highlighted that the state government had not received enough funds from the Center to tackle the forest fire. 

Meanwhile, no fresh incidents have been reported. It is worth noting that it indicates the court is concerned over the management and prevention of forest fires in the region. 

Uttarakhand is prone to forest fires, especially during the dry season, and these fires can have severe ecological, environmental, and even human consequences. The court's intervention might involve inquiries into the government's measures for forest fire prevention, response, and mitigation, as well as assessing whether the government is fulfilling its obligations to protect the environment and public welfare.