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Focus on raising revenue from forest products, says minister to dept

Focus on raising revenue from forest products, says minister to dept

KOLKATA: State Forest minister Jyotipriya Mallick instructed the officials of his department to cultivate means of earning revenue by selling forest products like timber, honey and medicinal plants.

Mallick on Tuesday took charge of the department and held a meeting with his officials at Aranya Bhavan in Salt Lake.

"The timber of trees like sal, segun and mahogany are very expensive and can fetch huge revenue for the government. Our department holds auctions for selling these resources. We should lay emphasis on such activities and at the same time explore means of procuring natural products from flowers and leaves of trees. West Bengal Forest Development Corporation is already engaged in marketing of honey and it has huge demand among the common people," Mallick said.

The minister said he would hold talks with the state Tourism department so that the resorts under the department can be made more attractive for the tourists.

"The department has already started providing high quality telephones to

our forest guards and building more watch towers to curb activities like poaching in forest.

"After we come out of the Covid pandemic situation, we will also raise awareness among the villagers staying adjacent to the forests so that they desist from killing animals for sports," he added.

The minister also stressed upon zero tolerance when it comes to transparency in the recruitment of the forest department.

"Recruitment should be through the Public Service Commission or similar recruitment bodies so that there is no complaint of favouritism," Mallick said.

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