Noted lake conservationist and water expert ,Dr Anil Mehta has emphasized that the tourism policies should ensure protection, conservation and enhancement of environment and fragile ecosystems. He said that It is high time that we start understanding who are the real tourists. Defining "Real Tourist" is necessary before drafting any tourism policy. Mehta said that in the context of wetlands, the "Real Tourists" are the migratory birds coming from thousands of miles away while facing many difficulties during their journey.
These real tourists are necessary for various ecological and biological processes that are essential for our health of wetlands and humans. Therefore, In order to keep the real tourists keep coming , their places of stay, cohabitation and excursion- resting, nesting , breeding and movement have to be developed and preserved. The irony is that we are ignoring the needs of the real tourists. The tourism plans are being made only for stay, luxury and entertainment of human tourists. This would not sustain tourism and damage the environment.
Tej Shankar Paliwal, former member of the Lake Development Authority, said that the development of more and more hotels is destroying the banks of the lakes and the hills of the catchment area. Due to this the habitats of native and migratory birds are getting destroyed. The very existence of lakes is in great danger. Director of Gandhi Manav Kalyan Samiti, Nand Kishore Sharma said that tourism is generating enormous waste of plastic and glass bottles of water and liquor. Fireworks and bright lights are rampant. Due to this the life of birds and aquatic animals is in danger.
The Environmentalist, Kushal Rawal and Digambar Singh urged the state government and District Administration to make the tourism policy based on conservation of eco systems ;and ensure the participation of environmentalists in policy making.
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