National Green Tribunal has directed the forest department of Manipur to close down a children club functioning from inside a reserve forest in the state.
The central forest division of Manipur forest department has stopped functioning of a children club inside a reserved forest area in the state following directive from National Green Tribunal, Eastern Zone Bench, Kolkata.
Reports available here said that Eastern Zone bench of the National Green Tribunal passed the order on October 31, 2017 following a writ petition filed by Indigenous Perspective, an Imphal based organisation in December 2016.
Accordingly the Divisional Forest Officer L Joykumar Singh of Central Forest Division of Manipur issued an order on November 2, 2017.
“It is hereby ordered that Maniwood children club at Cheiraoching, Thangmeiband Sinam Leikai inside the Langol Reserve Forest shall not be utilised and all operation shall remain withheld until further order,” the forest department order said.
The Range Forest Officer, Sadar West Range and the President of Joint Forest Management Committee shall strongly comply with the National Green Tribunal order, it added.
The National Green Tribunal order also asked “to stop all activities in the area in question until clearance is obtained under section of Forest (Conservation) Act 1980 from the Ministry of Environment and Forest.”
In Manipur legislative assembly this year, the state forest and environment minister Thounaojam Shyamkumar Singh responding to a question, had informed the House that a total of 85 encroachers including 53 from Heingang reserve forest and 32 from Langol reserve forest have been evicted.
The total area of reserve forests in the state was 984.25 sq km including 338.32 sq km in Churachandpur district and 0.09 sq km in Bishnupur district, he said. With area coverage of 253.89 sq km across its 8 reserve forest areas, Senapati district has the second highest coverage among all the hill districts while Chandel district has 3 reserve forests measuring 141.86 sq km.