For a green future
Large-scale tree planting programme undertaken by the Telangana Government has made significant strides in achieving an increase in green cover in the state
According to the latest Forest Survey of India (FSI) Report, Haritha Haram in Telangana has helped in the increase of the forest cover and green cover in the State. According to the report, the recorded forest area (RFA) in the State is 26,904 square kilometres of forest land of which 20,353 square kilometres is reserved forest, 5,939 square kilometres is protected forest and 612 square kilometres is unclassed forests.
The report says that three national parks and nine wildlife sanctuaries constitute the protected area network of the State covering 5.08 per cent of its geographical area. The main reason for the increase in forest cover in the State is due to Telangana ku Haritha Haram.
As a practical example of the Sanskrit adage 'Krushito Naasti Durbhiksham', Chief Minister K Chandrashekhar Rao has himself thrown up a challenge in the form of an innovative programme, 'Telangana ku Haritha Haram'. The objective of this programme is to increase the green and forest cover from 24 per cent to 33 per cent in the Telangana State with people's participation.
There are umpteen valid reasons for taking up this ambitious program on a grand scale. The forest land in Telangana State accounts for 24 per cent of the total geographical area in the State. To increase the green cover, the Telangana Government has launched its flagship program 'Telangana ku Haritha Haram' during 2015-16.
The agenda was to plant 120 crore seedlings outside the forest area and 10 crore seedlings in the Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC) and Hyderabad Metropolitan Development Authority (HMDA) areas in 4 years from 2015-16 to 2018-19, alongside planting and developing of 100 crore saplings inside the notified forests in 4 years from 2015-16 to 2018-19.
The aim is also to achieve 20 crore seedlings through taking plantations in the degraded forests through artificial regeneration method (AR method). Remaining 80 crore seedlings targets are to be achieved through rejuvenation of degraded forests through assisted natural regeneration (ANR).
As against a target of 20 crore seedlings under the category of inside forests planting, the actual achievement year-wise since 2015-16 till the current year, respectively has been: 2.933, 3.933. 3.939. 2.898. 3.537 and 2.039 crores, with a cumulative total of 19.339 crore seedlings.
As against a target of 80 crore seedlings under the category of inside forests planting and rejuvenation, the actual achievement year-wise since 2017-18 till 2019-20, respectively has been: 25.970, 4.570 and 4.727 crores, with a cumulative total of 35.267 crore seedlings.
As against a target of 120 Crores seedlings under the category of outside forests planting, the actual achievement year-wise since 2015-16 till the current year, respectively has been: 12.667, 25.862, 28.469, 27.777, 33.043 and 13.472 crores, with a cumulative total of 141.290 crore seedlings.
As against a target of 3 crore seedlings under the category of GHMC Planting, the actual achievement year-wise since 2015-16 till the current year, respectively has been: 0.001, 0.849, 0.768, 0.431, 0.717 and 1.957 crores, with a cumulative total of 4.723 crore seedlings.
As against a target of 7 crores seedlings under the category of HMDA Planting, the actual achievement year-wise since 2015-16 till the current year, respectively has been: 0.260, 0.970, 0.903, 0.876, 0.881 and 2.339 crores, with a cumulative total of 6.229 crore seedlings.
Cumulatively, as against a target of 230 crore seedlings under all categories, the actual year-wise achievement has been since 2015-16 till the current year, respectively, 15.861, 31.674, 60.049, 36.552, 42.905 and 26.242 crores, with a cumulative total of 213.283 crore seedlings.
The other achievements included, avenue plantations raised about 10,000 km, 76 forest urban parks created, 59 forest urban parks being developed in HMDA limits, 6,837 Palle Prakriti Vanalu were set up in each gram panchayat till date, Pattana Pragathi Vanalu or Yadadri Model plantation done in each ULBs nurseries established in all 12,751 gram panchayats and 143 urban local bodies. In total, 13,721 nurseries have been established.
Emphasis is given to the plantation of fruit-bearing plants, flowering plants etc., in and around house premises duly involving the households in the villages. The high-quality fruit-bearing grafted plants raised by the horticulture department are being supplied by the Forest Department to the household owners/beneficiaries free of cost. Apart from the fruit-bearing plants, the household owners are also being supplied ornamental plants. The planted seedlings are being maintained by providing tree guards, watering and protection etc., wherever required.
The latest technology is being used to monitor the seedling planted through geotagging. Green brigades and 'Haritha Rakshana' Committee have been constituted at various levels to ensure the participation of the citizens in the program and to make it a big public movement. So far, 30,902 green brigade teams have been formed to protect the plants.
In order to involve the maximum population and stakeholders in the programme, publicity campaigns are being taken up through various media as well.
On the occasion of World Environment Day, Rajya Sabha member Joginapally Santosh Kumar planted a sapling in Shameerpet in Medchal Mandal in Malkajgiri district. Santosh's Green India Challenge concept had evoked an unprecedented response from across the world including the chief ministers, Union Ministers, MPs, MLAs, film and sports and other eminent personalities as well as common citizens. Santosh's Green Challenge became viral on social media and it became a movement all over the country and in some parts of the world. Santosh's should be congratulated for boosting awareness on greenery overnight.
With inputs from VJM Divakar. Views expressed are personal