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A novel plan to create forest

Jun 14, 2010

The Madhya Pradesh Forest Department has announced a plan to rejuvenate degraded forests by providing land for plantation and payment to the beneficiaries. To be taken up under the Poor People's Participation programme, it will offer additional source of income to about 1.5 crore people living in villages adjoining forests.

Bhopal: The Madhya Pradesh Forest Department will shortly launch 'Jungle Lagao-Kamao' (create forest and earn) programme with a view to rejuvenate degraded forests besides providing additional source of livelihood to the villagers residing around the forests.

Under the programme, members of forest committees will be provided land by the State Forest Department for growing bamboos and fuel wood trees and developing meadows.

Plantation of saplings and grass will be done under the expert guidance of Forest Department officials and the beneficiaries will be paid wages under Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MNREGA), Forest Minister Sartaj Singh said.

The beneficiary will have full rights over the crop while the land will remain in the possession of the Forest Department. Eighty per cent income generated from the crop will be given to the beneficiary while the rest 20% will be given to the concerning Forest Committee, he said.

The Forest Minister informed that the concerned officers have been given instructions for identifying the beneficiaries and lands.

Singh said that degraded forests exist in about 45,000 sq km area in the state. In some of such areas, forests exist on papers alone. These degraded forests adjoin 22,500 villages which fall within the radius of five kms of forests.

He said that suggestions used to come to upgrade these degraded forests through Public-Private Partnership but there were hurdles in implementing these suggestions due to Forest Conservation Act.

Therefore, now large-scale plantation will be undertaken under Poor People's Participation programme. This will provide additional source of income to about 1.5 crore people living in villages adjoining forests apart from upgrading the forests, Singh added.

Source : iGovernment
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