BHOPAL: Security of forest staff remained on top priority during one day workshop of chief conservator of forest and forest officers held at the academy of administration on Wednesday.
Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan said that security of forest staff will be ensured at all costs. The contribution of forests to the state’s GDP (gross domestic product) is two per cent. It has to be increased to five per cent, he added.
Forest Minister Vijay Shah said that the forest department has been successful in protecting the forests and wildlife and in the expansion of forests. He assured the forest officials that the rules will be amended for the protection of forest employees.
Chouhan said that night safari should be started in Van Vihar in Bhopal. It should be developed in a manner that people even from Singapore come here for the night safari. He said that increasing forest area in MP was good news for the world.
The Chief Minister said that public service and environmental protection is the responsibility of the officers and employees of the Forest Services. It is important to be sensitive to the problems of people living in forest areas. It should be ensured that all eligible persons get pattas under the Forest Rights Act without any hassle. Strict action is required on various mafia operating in the forest area. It should be ensured that there are no new illegal possessions in the forest area, said Chouhan.
He said that there is a need for simplification of rules regarding the use of trees planted on our land. The importance of medicinal herbs derived from forests has increased during the Corona period. We have to consider what activities can be done from the forest area apart from wood. If we conduct activities by adding forests and livelihood then people will save the forest themselves. He called for the need to take necessary steps to avoid human-wildlife conflict.