Srinagar: The local administration has imposed a blanket ban on plantation of Russian poplar trees in the summer capital of Jammu and Kashmir keeping in view the large scale complaints of allergy being caused by its pollen.
District Magistrate Srinagar Farooq Ahmad Shah imposed the ban on fresh plantation of the Russian poplars through an order passed last evening.
Shah said the pollen falling from these trees had become a major source of allergies in the city and had reached alarming proportions. "This view has been endorsed by the experts as well," he said.
"Strict action under rules will be taken against those violating the directive. I have directed the police, Revenue and Social Forestry officials to enforce the ban immediately," Shah added.
The district magistrate said he has also sought a report from experts to be submitted within 15 days on devising a mechanism for uprooting of existing Russian poplars to prevent the pollen allergy from spreading.
The prevalence of pollen allergy in the valley has been a perennial irritant for the residents during the onset of summer every year.
The Russian poplar was introduced in Kashmir in 1980s under the Social Forestry Scheme in view of its fast growth.