Report by the government of Rajasthan on Sambhar festival, Jaipur, Rajasthan, 16/02/2023

Report filed by the government of Rajasthan, Department of Environment and Climate Change dated 16/02/2023.

The Principal Bench of the National Green Tribunal, February 15, 2023 in the matter of Dr Abid Ali Khan Vs State of Rajasthan & Others had directed the Chief Secretary, Rajasthan to file a report on the Sambhar festival and its effects, if any, on the ecology.

The District Collector, Jaipur has submitted that the events of Sambhar festival are being organised at venues which will not affect the birds or natural habitat of the lake. The Department of Tourism, the organiser of the first ever Sambhar festival in Sambhar, Jaipur in its report said that to attract tourists to the region, development works were carried out and a budget of Rs. 100 crores was sanctioned from government of India to promote Sambhar as an ecological destination. After completion of development works, all sites were handed over to Sambhar Salts Ltd and Nagar Palika, Sambhar.

The Department of Tourism developed the lake side camping area for camping purposes only. After various meetings it was decided that the lakeside area which is alongside the road was the apt place for the food court, craft shops, camping along with some adventure activities such as kite flying, parasailing, and cycling. No sound related activity is being done there. Also, the main lake area which is home to the migratory birds is at least 2 kms from this - so this event won't impact the migratory birds in any way.

Cultural evenings are planned to be organised in the Sambhar town and sound arrangements will be made as per the existing government laws. The sambhar festival will be held in the lake side camping area only said the report to the NGT.

The petitioner, Abid Ali Khan had said that the activities planned during the Sambhar festival would adversely affect the migratory birds and natural habitat of the lake.