Guwahati: The Assam government has planned to plant one crore saplings in the state on October 2 on the occasion of Gandhi Jayanti, Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said on Thursday.
Speaking at the Amrit Plantation Programme launched at Chandubi in Kamrup district today, Chief Minister Sarma said that on the occasion of Gandhi Jayanti on October 2 this year, the Assam government would plant one crore saplings.
“Everybody to participate on the occasion would get Rs. 100 as a token of gratitude to look after the saplings planted on the occasion. After three years if the plant survives, the person will get another Rs. 200. He said that to create a forest-centric parallel economy, the State government has taken steps to encourage the plantation of commercial timber like sal, teak etc,” Sarma said.
He said that around 20 per cent of the forest land in Assam is under encroachment and an adverse affect of it is being faced by all. He said that people are destroying hills to construct their dwelling houses.
“At the same time with the increase of the use of fossil fuel, global warming has taken an alarming proposition,” Sarma pointed out.
He appealed to the people at large to contribute to cut carbon emissions to save the balance of Mother Earth.
Spelling out the steps taken for the preservation of forest lands in the state, the Chief Minister said that in the last two years by launching eviction drives in Lumding Reserve forests, Pabho Reserve forest, Burhachapori Wildlife sanctuary, Orang National Park, 61375 bigha lands have been freed from encroachments.
The Chief Minister said that the State government is working to increase the total forest cover from the existing 36 per cent to 38 per cent.
It is not in Summer alone, on all 365 days, concerted efforts will be taken to plant more saplings, save trees and protect the forest from being encroached upon. He also called for Jan Bhagidari for a massive plantation.
Assam Governor Gulab Chand Kataria who also graced the occasion also released two books titled ‘Towards Natural Farming’ and ‘Rare and Threatened Plant Species of Assam’ along with the Chief Minister.