Powergrid goes green
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- Published 21.09.10
|The plantation drive at Ripu-Chirang forest on Sunday. Telegraph picture|
Kokrajhar, Sept. 20: Powered by The Telegraph report, “Retired armymen on green mission” in its May 31 edition, the Powergrid Corporation of India Ltd at Salakati in Kokrajhar district has tied up with the Eco Task Force and the forest department of the Bodoland Territorial Council (BTC) to carry out a plantation drive in the area.
The corporation thanked The Telegraph for showing them the way through the news item.
A plantation drive was jointly carried out by the 135 battalion of the Eco Task Force, Powergrid Corporation, Salakati and the BTC forest department in the Digli area under Haltugaon forest divison, Ripu-Chirang forest in Kokrajhar yesterday.
Funded by the Powergrid Corporation as part of the corporate social responsibility scheme, a total of 10,000 saplings, consisting of various rain trees and fruit-bearing plants, were planted. Besides supporting the plantation drive, Powergrid is also funding the fencing process and maintenance cost for three years.
“Though we have been doing various social activities as part of the corporate social responsibility scheme, this is the first time we are into environment-related work. We are thankful to The Telegraph which carried a story sometime back, highlighting the increasing deforestation and how the Eco Task Force is trying to revive forest cover through their work. We are happy in doing our bit for the protection of forest wealth,” said B. Paul Choudhury, deputy general manager, Powergrid, Salakati.
Felling is still rampant in Ripu-Chirang reserve forest, home to many wildlife species, including golden langurs, elephants, leopards, wild boars, deer and hornbills.
Among those present during the programme included Col Naveen Sharma of the 135 battalion of the Eco Task Force and G. Basumatary, conservator of forests, BTC.
According to estimates and records available with the forest department, 445.02 sq. km forest land in BTC is under encroachment. The total area under forest in BTC is 3466.77 sq. km, out of which reserve forest and proposed reserve forest is 2531 sq. km and 264.66 sq. km respectively.
The Eco Task Force, manned by mostly retired army personnel from the state, has taken up re-plantation in the reserve forest since 2008 and till date around nine lakh saplings of various species have been planted in 1000 hectares of forest land. 275 retired army personnel from the state are in service, with a mission to save the forest land and forest cover.
Among those present during the programme included Col. Naveen Sharma of the 135 Battalion of the Eco Task Force, G. Basumatary, conservator of forests, BTC, among others.