Berhampur(Odisha): Steps are being taken to undertake massive plantation in areas affected by Cyclone Phailin in Odisha’s Ganjam district under Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme.

The programme would be carried out through different agencies following the Election Commission (EC) relaxing the model code of conduct, Ganjam district Collector Prem Chandra Chaudhary said.

Earlier, the administration had sought permission from EC to take up the programme. “We can go ahead with plantation with the onset of monsoon. It would be implemented with the help of forest, soil conservation and horticulture wings,” an officer said.

“We need to raise nurseries and complete earth work before plantation is taken up,” said DFO (Berhampur) S S Mishra. He said plans are afoot to sow 46,75 lakh saplings across the district at an estimated cost of Rs 23.2 crore.

Saplings would be planted in different towns over 500 hectare along 30 km-long coast and 2,000 hectare of natural forests.

Around two lakh trees were uprooted and forests damaged during Cyclone Phailin in October, last year.

Berhampur, Aska, Bhanjanagar and Chhatrapur were among the worst-hit.

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