Indore (Madhya Pradesh): In a major step to improve the ecosystem of the state’s commercial capital, Indore Municipal Corporation (IMC) has decided to develop 400 city forests (Ahilya Vans) in the city which has been adjudged the cleanest urban body five times in a row. A decision to this effect was taken at a review meeting chaired by municipal commissioner Pratibha Pal on Wednesday.
At the meeting, Pal ordered identifying 400 places in the city where Ahilya forests can be developed. She said that about 12 places for developing Ahilya forests had been already been selected in Zone No.s 7 and 8. She also stated that at least 5 places had been identified under each ward for setting up dense forests to attract heavy dark clouds for precipitation.
Pal said that Mahaguni, Tibubia, Siras, Sitwan, Peepal, Jamun, Mohani, Jackfruit, Kadam, Champa and Chitwan trees should be planted for developing dense forests. Small ponds will be built to attract birds and eco-friendly huts will be constructed for the residents. A small pond will be constructed in the centre of each Ahilya forest for biodiversity and for attraction of birds. Besides, 1.5 to 2.5-metre-wide jogging tracks will constructed for residents, senior citizens and children in the forests. Provision of rainwater harvesting will also be done on priority to increase the level of underground water in these forests.
The municipal commissioner directed that walking tracks be constructed on the sides by covering these sites with boundary walls on all sides. Along with planting flower-dense plants in the first row and planting forestry species in the remaining area, Pal said, efforts should be made by IMC to create a new ecosystem. She said the forests will increase the percentage of rainfall in the city and bring down the temperature.