India — The members of Parliamentary Standing Committee on Science and Technology, Environment and Forests held discussion on forest fire related issues with the officials of Ministry of Home Affairs, Ministry of Environment Forest & Climate Change, Science and Technology and heads of organizations based in Dehradun such as Indian Council of Forestry Research & Education, Forest Research Institute, Wildlife Institute of India, Indian Institute of Remote Sensing, Members of civil society, Uttarakhand forest department on Tuesday.
Chairperson Renuka Chaudhary advocated special green bonus for the state to protect and preserve 71% forest area in the state and, that the forest fire should be declared national calamity. “The farmers have been burning the agriculture refuse for several years where the fire spread to vast track of forest through pine leaves lying in bulk on the grond. So we must educate and aware local people who know the forest fully well and are their best guardian, about the harmful impact of the fire,” she said.
She said, it is said that in every five years, forest fire incidents happen. Besides this, the lesser winter rainfall and shortage of moisture in the forest are also responsible for magnifying forest fire.
Dinesh Aggarwal, the state forest minister said, “We have submitted a letter to the Parliament Committee members urging that the centre must start a scheme whereby they compensate to the loss of human lives, crops, calamity hundred percent. They should also provide financial assistance to grow broad leaf and fruit trees and, also in augmenting forest rivers. The Centre should also allow in removing green trees from the fire lines at the height of 1000 ft in the mountains.”
He said, the centre must be practice in giving assistance to the states in such calamity, and, remarked that Rs 5 crore which centre had assured to give the state during the forest fire has not given so far.
The members of Parliamentary Standing Committee on Science and Technology, Environment and Forests made a field visit to the Mussoorie Forest Division on Monday to study the impact of fire on forests, biodiversity and ecosystem in the region. The chairperson Renuka Choudhary besides 13 Members of Parliament were present.