Striving to make the state environmentally secure in near future, the Himachal Pradesh government now aims to cover one third of the panchayats under Community-led Assessment, Awareness, Advocacy and Action Programme (Clap) by next September.
The Clap programme was initiated by the Himachal Pradesh government in association with Development Alternatives, follows the multi-stake holders' participatory approach with the goal of mobilising community responsibility for environment protection and carbon neutrality in the state through a network of eco-clubs, mahila mandals, panchayats, urban local bodies and non-government organisation, leading to a mass movement, realising the dream of making Himachal an environmentally "safe" state and role model for rest of the country.
Of the total 3,243 panchayats, 1,070 have been covered under the Clap. The programme envisaged to reach out to 57 towns and 6,000 villages, spread out in 80 administrative blocks through the field implementing agencies comprising eco-clubs and mahila mandals.
Nagin Nanda, director, environment, science and technology, told Hindustan Times that assessment has already been carried out in 493 panchayats, while 177 have been covered under awareness and advocacy. "By March next year, we aim to cover 700 panchayats," said Nanda.