19,612 acres of forest land retrieved: Govt

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Jammu: The Jammu and Kashmir government Tuesday said that the forest department has retrieved 19,612 acres of land against 50,459 acres encroached forest land in the state.
Replying to a question by Congress MLA Vikar Rasool Wani in the state Assembly, Forest minister Choudhary Lal Singh said that the department has retrieved 18,542 acres against 36,265 acres encroached forest land in the Jammu division.
“Similarly, the department retrieved 1,069 acres of 14,194 acres encroached forest land in the Kashmir division, he added.
The forest department has developed 1,233 forest closures in the last three years in various parts of the state, the minister added.
Singh said that the department has expanded Rs 123.27 crore against the estimated cost of Rs 134.29 crore for the development of these projects.
To prevent incidents of man-animal conflict in the Banihal constituency, the minister said that the department has taken up several measures.
The steps include setting up of a control room at Banihal supervised by range officer Ramban-Banihal; engagement of a local person for tackling the incidents, posters among the public living near the forests, among others, he added.
He said in the last two years, one person has died and 15 others have suffered injuries in the incidents of man-animal conflict in Banihal, while the department paid Rs 5.54 lakh as compensation to the victims.

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