Forest dept in dilemma, no space to plant trees | india | Hindustan Times
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Forest dept in dilemma, no space to plant trees

The forest department was unable to meet its target of planting 8.5 lakh trees in the district this year due to scarcity of land and less rainfall during monsoon.

india Updated: Jul 27, 2011 01:14 IST
HT Correspondent

The forest department was unable to meet its target of planting 8.5 lakh trees in the district this year due to scarcity of land and less rainfall during monsoon.

According to forest department officials, the district could not accommodate even five lakh plants.

"There is not enough land in the city to plant so many trees therefore we have surrendered some amount of our targets this year. Less rain also hampered our plantation drive," range officer Devinder Rao said.

The department can plant only 12,500 trees in the Aravalli hill region, far less than the target of 75,000. The department had set a target of 8.5 lakh plants for Gurgaon district out of which five lakh were to be distributed among government offices and 3.5 lakh were to be planted under various schemes.

"Even the three lakh target for Gurgaon city is going to be very difficult to achieve. We can plant only 1,100 plants on one hectare of land," a senior official of the district forest department said.

Contradicting government officials' argument of unavailability of land, non-governmental organisation 'I am Gurgaon' said it will plant one million trees in the city in the next two years and has already identified areas for the same.

Forest department, however, said such claims are baseless.

"These are superficial figures and in the bio-diversity park where the NGO plans to accommodate more than one lakh plants, it can accommodate not more than a few thousand due to bad topography," said a forest official said.

Plantation drive has been hit by the rapid developmental activities in the city. Some notified forest land is said to have been encroached by pavements and other constructions. Out of the three lakh plants planted in 1999, only 1,32,000 have survived.