UP to have 15 pc green area by 2027 with public participation: Yogi

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Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath on Tuesday said that Van Mahotsava has turned into a mass movement in Uttar Pradesh, which is blessed by nature and God and in the last 6 years, more than 131 crore saplings have been planted with public cooperation.

While presided over a special meeting with the ministers to discuss the action plan for the successful organisation of ‘Van Mahotsav 2023’, Yogi said, “More than 5.72 crore saplings were planted in the year 2017–18, 11.77 crores in 2018-19, 22.60 crores in 2019-20, 25.87 crores in 2020–21, 30.53 crores in 2021–22, and 35.49 crores in 2022-23. It is encouraging that, along with planting saplings, full care is also being taken for their protection.”

He said that during the awareness week organised between July 1 to 7 great enthusiasm was seen among the general public. “This enthusiasm will become the basis for making this year’s ‘Van Mahotsav’ a success. The target of ‘Green UP’ will be fulfilled only with the maximum participation of the common people. Programmes like Prabhat Pheri, slogans, essay writing, speech competitions, and wall writing should be continued in schools,” he said.

The CM said that monsoon has set in the state. “This season is the ideal time for planting. After the successful organisation of awareness week, now we will have to join the mass plantation programme on July 22 as ‘Van Mahotsav’. Like the previous years, with zeal and full enthusiasm, this year also we are ready to create a new record of plantation,” he said.

He said that every department, institution and citizen will have to make efforts with the aim of planting 35 crore saplings during the massive plantation campaign this year. “Department-wise target of plantation has been fixed by the Forest Department. Division-wise targets have also been fixed.

Efforts should be made to plant at least 1,000 saplings in every village. Make preparations to plant 5 crore saplings simultaneously on August 15,” he said.

Yogi said that forest land, Gram Panchayat, community land, expressway, highway, 4 lane road, canal, land of development authorities, railway land, medical institute and educational institute land as well as private premises can be used by citizens for plantation.

He said that plantation should be done around the playground in rural areas. “At least 1,000 saplings should be planted at the Gram Panchayat level. Set targets for plantation in urban wards as well. Get saplings planted in cowsheds, as well as tree guards installed for the protection of plants. Connect the private sector, NGOs, religious and social organisations with the campaign,” he said.

The CM said that availability of saplings is very important for the success of the massive plantation drive. “In such a situation, all necessary arrangements should be made in time by the Forest and Climate Change Department. Prepare hi-tech nurseries. Proper preparation and publicity should be done so that everyone can get high-quality plants easily. Geo-tagging of plantation sites should be done,” he said.

He said that under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGA), a very useful scheme is being run in the interest of farmers and the environment in the form of ‘Mukhyamantri Krishak Vriksha Dhan’ scheme, encouraging plantation on weir of private farms.

Yogi said, “Under this scheme, if the beneficiary of MGNREGA plants a minimum of 200 saplings on his land and protects them, then there is an arrangement to provide an incentive amount of Rs 50,000 in three years by the state government. Give it widespread publicity to ensure the farmers benefit. This will also lead to tree plantations and increase the income of farmers. This effort will go a long way in realising the message of ‘khet par medh, medh par ped’.”

He said that due to extensive public cooperation, the total green area of the state is continuously increasing. “Our target is to increase the total green area of the state from 9 percent at present to 15 percent by 2026–27. According to this target, 175 crore saplings will have to be planted and protected in the next five years. Everyone has to try to achieve this goal. For this, there is a need to connect people with the message of plant trees, save trees,” he said.

The CM said all ministers should be on the tour of the districts under their charge on the occasion of ‘Van Mahotsav’ on July 22. “Take the plantation campaign forward there with the assistance of the local public and public representatives. In cases where ministers are unable to attend, nodal officers are responsible for ensuring that plantations are successful in the presence of local public representatives,” he said.

He said that planned plantation efforts like ‘Khadya Van, Bal Van, Nagar Van, Amrit Van, Yuva Van and Shakti Van’ made in previous years should be done this year also. “Such forests are proving to be very useful in increasing greenery,” he said.

Yogi said that the people should be encouraged to carry out intensive plantations on the banks of various rivers, including Ganga, Yamuna, and Saryu. “Incentives should also be given to the people joining this programme,” he said.

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