Officials told to stop forest encroachment

IMPHAL, 27th Dec: Chief Minister N Biren has instructed the authority concerned to constitute a committee to develop an effective strategy to check rampant expansion of human habitation and encroachment on reserved forest areas in Langol hill range.
He was speaking at a review meeting of forest & environment department, Loktak Development Authority (LDA) and labour & employment department held at the CM’s secretariat on Thursday.
Stating that human habitation is about to reach the top of Langol hill range, Biren asked the officials to find out an effective mechanism to check illegal encroachments on reserved forest areas.
On the other hand, the CM expressed happiness that awareness among people of hill districts about environment protection and ecological balance has increased in the past few years. Call for the protection of Amur Falcon migratory birds in Tamenglong district was well responded by the local people and it was a good sign, he said.
Biren also instructed the officials concerned to speed up works regarding expansion of Manipur Zoological Garden. As zoos play important part in attraction of tourists and visitors to the state, the present complex of the Manipur Zoological Garden should be upgraded and expanded with the acquisition of required land, he added. Principal chief conservator of forests (PCCF) K Angami and directorate of environment director Dr Y Nabachandra presented a detailed account of the activities of the department through Powerpoint presentations at the meeting.
Forest department collected Rs 984.668 lakh as revenue from April to October this year. As per the Forests Report - 2017 of the country, the total forest area of Manipur is 17418 sq km. It means that 78.01 per cent of the total geographical area of the state is covered with forests. The total reserved forest area of the state is 1467 sq km while protected forests area is 4171 sq km and unclassed forests area is 11780 sq km.
Ecological parks are being constructed at different parts of the state under the aegis of the directorate of environment. The directorate has submitted Rs 100 crore DPR for rejuvenation of Nambul River to the union ministry of environment, forest and climate change. The directorate had also surveyed the present status of complexes of all Umang Lais (Sylvan deities) of the state.
Loktak Development Authority (LDA) project director L Bhagaton in his presentation said that works being taken up by LDA under State Plan of 2017-18 fiscal year include Phumdi removal, improvement of Yangoi river and improvement of drainage system in the eastern side of the lake. LDA is also extending support to Bishnupur district administration in the implementation of Loktak Livelihood Mission, he added.
Deputy labour commissioner K Bono presented Powerpoint presentation about the activities of the department. He said that the main functions of the department are to provide care, protection, welfare, social security of the working population in the state by enforcing 25 different labour laws and various labour welfare schemes.
The CM directed officials concerned of the labour and employment department to prepare a comprehensive report on requirement of manpower and equipment of all the ITIs of the state for seeking support from the Centre.
Chief secretary Dr J Suresh Babu, additional chief secretary (forest & environment/labour & employment) Dr Suhel Akhtar, principal secretary (finance) Rakesh Ranjan and other high ranking officials of the government were also present at the meeting.

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