CS-led panel OKs use of 87 hectares forest land for developmental projects

CS-led panel OKs use of 87 hectares forest land for developmental projects
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The Forest Advisory Committee (FAC) headed by Chief Secretary, B V R Subrahmanyam, on Wednesday in its 114th meeting cleared 31 proposals regarding use of 87 hectares of forest land for various developmental projects of public importance.

The FAC after detailed deliberations cleared the proposalsin the road, railway, telecom and transmission sectors on the specified termsand conditions.

Financial Commissioner Revenue, Commissioner/SecretaryForest, Ecology & Environment Department, Principal Chief Conservator ofForests J&K, Commissioner/Secretary PWD (R&B), Director Soil and WaterConservation Department, J&K, Director Environment and Remote SensingDepartment, J&K, Director Social Forestry Department, J&K, ChiefWildlife Warden, J&K, Managing Director State Forest Corporation, J&K,Chief Conservator of Forests, Kashmir, CCF FCA/Member Secretary FAC,J&K,Dr.G A Bhat, Environmentalist, other senior officers of Forest and PMGSY andrepresentatives of User Agencies participated in the meeting.

The proposals cleared included widening of Basohli BaniBhaderwah road by GREF, construction of road from Dessu to Lehenwan Margan Passby PMGSY, muck dumping sites for widening of National Highway by NHAI inRamban, erection of ground based telecom for rollout of broadband wirelessaccess service to Shri Amarnathji Yatris at Sonamarg/Baltal and in Chandanwari,rural road facilities in Poonch, Reasi, Udhampur, Ramnagar, Basohli, Ramban,Mahore areas through PMGSY in Jammu region and in Kupwara and Baramulladistricts of Kashmir division.

While reiterating the directions on ensuring bare minimumfelling of trees as far as possible, undertaking compensatory afforestationover alternate land in lieu of diversion of forest land and observance of allFAC conditions, Chief Secretary asked the Forest department to ensure that theMonitoring Committees constituted for the purpose closely monitor the worksbeing undertaken in the forest areas. Chief Secretary further asked the User Agenciesto strictly adhere to the instructions issued by the Forest Department whereinUser Agencies have been asked to consult the officers of the Forest departmentat the project conceptualization stage, to ensure working outproposals/alignments which involve minimum felling of tress and preservation offlora and fauna.

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