NAINITAL, July 2
Forest and Environment minister Dr Harak Singh Rawat and MLA Ram Singh Kaira inaugurated the Van Mahotsav by planting saplings at Hanuman Gadi on Monday. The cheques worth Rs 350 crores were distributed to 26 Van Panchayat sarpanch for Pine resin extraction on the occasion.
The Forest and Environment Minister Dr Harak Singh Rawat said that the Van Mahotsav is being inaugurated from Nainital and plantation drive will be carried out during the Van Mahotsav with the support of Schools, Colleges, NGO’s and Van Panchayats. He said that development will be done making a balance between development and forest. He said that capacity of providing air, food etc to 300 crore people is there today while there are 730 crore people. There is an addition of 8 crore people every year. By 2025 the population will explode to 1000 crore while the earth has the capacity of providing air, water, food to only 200 crore people hence each person should contribute in conserving environment and also stress on controlling pollution.
Rawat said that Harela festival is a sign of prosperity and greenery in the state and plantation drive will be carried out on this day and the saplings will be planted considering the geographical condition. He appealed to control the use of plastic and stop the use of polythene if we wanted to keep our environment clean. He said that those Panchayat Bhavans will be constructed in those Van panchayats being run under JICA. The chief Forest conservator Kumaon Kapil Joshi said that in 1950 the agriculture minister then started the Van Mahotsav program which is continuing since. He said that Van Panchayats will be strengthened further. MLA Ram Singh Kaira, Dist president Pradeep Bisht, Bhanu Pant, Pooran Mehra, Daya Kishan Pokhriya, ADM BL FIRMAL, Forest conservator Tejaswani Patil and other officials were present on the occasion.