JAMMU, JULY 15 : As a part of 68th Van Mahotsava, Minister for Forests, Ecology and Environment Choudhary Lal Singh today kick started plantation drives at Tungi Morh, Jalabi Morh, Chowki Chaura areas of Akhnoor tehsil and later at Sunderbani and Nowshera areas of Rajouri district.
MLA Akhnoor, Rajeev Sharma, MLA Khour, Krishen Lal Bhagat, MLA Nowshera, Ravinder Raina, Principal Chief Conservator of Forests Ravi Kesar, District Development Commissioner Rajouri, Dr Shahid Iqbal Choudhary, Chief Wildlife Warden, Manoj Panth, Additional Principal Chief Conservator of Forests, Roshan Jaggi, Director Ecology and Environment, O P Sharma, Director Social Forestry, A K Gupta, Chief Conservator of Forests, Farooq Gillani, Director Forest Protection Force, Asif Sagar, Managing Director SFC, Suresh Gupta, Director SFRI, B M Sharma besides other senior officers of Forests and its allied wings, Health, Education, R&B and RDD accompanied the Minister.
A large number of people of Akhnoor, Khour, Surnderbani and Nowshera participated in this massive plantation drive and planted saplings of different species like Chinar, Mango, Jamun, Borh, Saru, Guava, Boogal, Jeo-Pota, Raat Ki Rani and Amla in the forests of the areas.
While addressing the gathering, Choudhary Lal Singh said that Government has prepared a comprehensive plan to beautify every barren and roadside strip from Lakhanpur to Leh with green cover within two years. He said instructions have been issued to the Divisional Forest Officers to plant about 10 lakh plants of different spices across the Jammu region during rainy season. He said
The Minister called for carrying out plantation drives throughout the region for reversing the harmful effects of deforestation and global warming besides preserving the pristine natural beauty. He also called for generating massive awareness regarding harmful effects of deforestation and need to plant more trees to maintain fragile ecological balance.
Choudhary Lal Singh emphasized the importance of trees and plants and mentioned that trees are best friends of mankind as they serve in a variety of ways to every creature on planet earth. “So it is a collective responsibility of all stakeholders of the society to contribute for preserving the green wealth and nature’s best gift”, said the Minister.
He informed that to mark 68th Van Mahotsava, Forest Department has planted one lakh plants in both the areas of Jammu and Rajouri districts.
Later, Minister laid foundation stone of Nowshera Bye-Pass road in the presence of MLA Nowshera.
Responding to the demands of the locals of Nowshera, Choudhary Lal Singh announced Rs. 50 lakh for construction of Forest Guest House near Mangla Devi Mata temple and directed the Principal Conservator of Forests to develop Eco-Tourism Park in the town on modern lines.
Choudhary Lal Singh also distributed plants of different species of Nowshera to the locals for plantation. He said that the ensuing rainy season is the best time for plantation and forest department has taken it on mission mode to cover maximum suitable areas Seeking the cooperation of the people, Ch. Lal Singh asked all stakeholders to be a part of plantation drives so that ecology can be maintained properly. He said that government is contemplating to update the forest policy with the aim to increase the forest wealth of the state.
2015 Kashmir Despatch