What is Greening Scheme Mission in Punjab
During 2012, an afforestation scheme initiative has been taken by Punjab. It is called the Greening Punjab Mission or GPM that is first in its record. The main focus of the scheme launch is to improve areas undercover in the state to up to 15%. In addition, Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal has said that near about 40 crore trees will be planted due to this scheme to improve greenery in the state. The state government tried to drive the attention of a large number of farmers to be engaged in this scheme work. The following part of the article will take you through more details of the scheme.
What are the highlighting features of Greening Punjab Mission?
- Main aim – The main aim of the scheme launch is to plant 40 crores of trees at the cost of 1900 crore. Some of the plants that will be planned are Neem, Kikar, Sheesham, Guava, mango, ornamental trees, and others. By the effective launch of the scheme, it will be easy to make the state clean and keep it pollution-free.
- Availability of land for plantation – According to a survey, 12, 821 hectares of land has been found to be available. In addition, under plantation drive, 9,800 hectare of panchayat land is available in 9145 villages. In addition, 3021 hectare of land is also available in urban areas.
- Motivate farmers – The state government is trying to motivate farmers by the successful launch of the above-said scheme. The government is also seeking support and cooperation from the farmers that would help in an easy plantation of the trees.
Details of current forest cover
From the total area, 6.78 percent of the state’s land is under forest area according to the estimation given by Forest Survey of India. During the GPM launch, it was a little lower around 6.1 percent. So, in due course of time of scheme launch, it has been seen that the area under forestation has increased.
Also, as per the state’s forest cover requirement, it should be near about 20% of the geographical area. In Punjab, 15% of the total land should be under forest cover. Along with this, 84% of trees should be given for agriculture and horticulture purpose in the state.
Comprehensive study of saplings planted over seven years
As promised in the scheme, not even 25% of the total targeted 40 saplings have been planted over the past seven years. During its first five years, near about five crore trees have been planted. These were mainly in government lands, schools, institutes, various organizations, and villages. During the last two years, near about 35 lakh trees have been planted. However, to celebrate the 550th birth anniversary of Guru Nanak Dev, near about 550 trees have been planted in around 12700 villages in Punjab. As of now, it has been said that 72 lakh saplings are being prepared for plantation and GPM will provide its maintenance costing as has been said in GPM budget.
Difficulty of achieving scheme targets
Even in the course of seven years, the scheme has been unable to reach even half of its target due to four reasons. In the first place, the survival rate of plants is poor, along with less supply of plants even against failure to make up to the target of 40 crores.
Secondly, there has been rapid tree felling in the state along with problems of afforestation that resulted in the situation. As per the plan, instead of planting near about five crore saplings till 2020, only one crore saplings were planted every year. So, coupled up with a low survival rate of the plants, the state government could not make up to its promised target.
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