Directs for creation of livelihoods, development of Ecotourism and dedicates Trek route to people
KULGAM: The Conservator of Forests (CoF), Irfan Ali Shah today visited several remote areas in Kund valley, Kulgam falling under jurisdiction of Anantnag Forest Division.
During the day-long visit, a massive public outreach program was organised at remote Nageenpora, Kund Valley, Officers from District Administration, Police, DDC members, PRIs and locals of the area participated in the event in large numbers.
The CoF in his address informed that the Forest Department has accelerated its efforts for both Greening of degraded forest areas as well as providing and strengthening of livelihoods for both forest fringe inhabitants as well as local educated youth.
He informed that during the current financial year, about 5.50 lac plants are being planted in Anantnag District under various schemes. He informed that under Har Gaon Haryali each village is being covered for greening of areas outside forest areas and for making our villages greener.
Under the ‘One Beat Guard One Village’ programme thousands of plants are being planted in Anantnag. He said about 4.50 lac mandays of employment will be generated through MGNREGA Convergence by Territorial Forests and its allied wings in Anantnag during the current financial year.
On this occasion, the CoF directed for settling of claims received from locals, forest dwellers etc under Forest Rights Act on fast track basis and for expediting verification of Kashmiri notice cases for meeting bonafide timber requirements so that forest fringe and tribal communities get benefitted.
He informed that under Forest Rights Act 2546 Claims including 9 claims under Community Forest Rights have been received by FRC and 110 numbers of claims have been verified, out of which 16 cases have been cleared by the District Level Committee for issuing title which involves 110.40 hectares of Forest land.
The CoF informed that various Amrit Sarovars have been rejuvenated/ created in South Kashmir. About 30 numbers of Amrit Sarovar sites were thrown open on 15th August, 2022 and various ceremonial plantation drives were carried out on identified Amrit Sarovar sites on the occasion with active participation of PRIs, District Administration and other stakeholders.
He said that a large number of Trek routes have been opened in South Kashmir and many will be opened next month end with the melting of snow in higher reaches.
He directed the forest officials to immediately start work on opening a new 10 km long trek route from Ziyarat Sharief Kund to Waltengo Nad area and to collaborate with local trekking and hiking groups for organizing trekking programmes for youth and potential visitors in Kund valley.
The CoF said that in order to provide road connectivity and providing of other services, 10 cases have been received for diversion of forest land in Anantnag District, out of which 6 cases have been approved by the Government as on date other remaining 4 land diversion cases are under process for FCA clearance.
The CoF directed the DFO concerned to start work on identification of suitable site for construction of Forest Rest House so that Kund Valley comes on the Ecotourism map of J&K. He also directed for construction of a new Block Forest Office so that there is speedy redressal of forest related public grievances in Nageenpora, Kund and people may not need to travel large distances for their grievances redressal.
The program was attended by all local leaders from Gujjar and Bakerwal communities, DFOs, Range officers and other officials of J&K Forest Department, Sarpanches and Panches from 15 panchayats of the area, Tehsildar, Block Development Officer, officers and officials from line departments.