he valley of Kashmir is known for its climate. The salubrious valley makes up for a great scene and comes as a breeze to the eyes. However, with the explosion in the population the scene is changing. Look at Budgam district, it looks like an African colony with the brick kilns dotting the entire landscape. The industrial area at Khanmoh also exudes a humongous amount of smoke into the atmosphere. The amount of deforestation that we have seen in Lolab and Kokernag belts would move any conscious citizen to tears. There are pine trees being cut even as you are reading this. Taking advantage of the situation the vested interests are moving up the sloping trees and felling trees with impunity. When a common Kashmiri visits Delhi, beyond a distance of a hundred meters nothing is visible. People are wheezing, coughing and somehow managing to use anti-pollution masks and all that. The Air Quality Index of a lot of cities in south asia is the worst in the world. The political parties are blaming each other for the ordeal but the truth is that humans have done irretrievable damage to the environment which is hard to compensate , and things are going to get worse.
For Kashmir, the panic button may not have been pressed as of now. However, for the next few decades we need to checkmate polluting environment. We need to indulge in massive afforestation efforts. Planting more trees would ensure that the coming generations also breathe in the same fresh air as we do. Let us pledge ourselves to the cause of saving our valley from climate change. A few degrees increase in the average temperature would ensure that our valley turns into a kind of desert. We need to take punitive action against vested interests who are hell bound to change our environment for bad.