|Early Times Report|
SAMBA, Jan 21: Commissioner Secretary, Forest, Ecology and Environment, Sanjeev Verma, today inaugurated Biodiversity Park at Purmandal area of Samba Forest Division raised over an area of 15 hectare.
The Biodiversity Park, established to conserve biodiversity and maintain ecology of the area besides disseminating awareness among the visitors on biodiversity, has a Pond, Water Harvesting Structure, Vatikas of Herbal plants and viewpoint. Besides, Samriti Van has also been established in the park where one can plant a sapling in memory of their loved ones.
Dr. Mohit Gera, Principal Chief Conservator of Forests (HoFF) and Chairman, J&K Biodiversity Council, Dr. T S Ashok Kumar, Director, Department of Soil and Water Conservation, B M Sharma, Additional Principal Chief Conservator of Forests, Jammu accompanied the Commissioner Secretary.
Commission Secretary emphasized for further development of Biodiversity Park in the next financial year by way of augmenting biodiversity in its live form, landscape improvement, water points, more viewpoints and other utilities.
He also inspected Forest Nursery Purmandal and reiterated that proportion of nursery stock of indigenous, rare, threatened, endangered and medicinal plants shall be increased for the eco-restoration works as well as for public distribution.
PCCF (HoFF) stressed on development of whole Devika catchment by way of planting saplings of local species along with construction of water harvesting structures like Crates, Cribs, DRSM etcetera for water conservation and augmentation of groundwater. These measures will augment the moisture regime of the catchment and enhance presence of micro flora and fauna, he added. He asked DFO Samba for covering all the villages under the program 'One Beat Guard, One Village' 'Ped Lagayen Beti Ke Naam' under 'Har Gaon Haryali' campaign in next two to three years also, so that greening of non-forest land is enhanced.
Pertinently, the Forest Department initiated development of Biodiversity Park last year and there is a plan to continue enriching the area with plantation of local species such as Acacia, Dalbergia, Jamun, Bamboo, Palash, Bauhinia, Simbal, Ber, Peepal and Bargad and creation of ponds and Water Harvesting Structures during the current year as well as coming years. The department along with the Department of Soil and Water Conservation is treating the catchment part of river Devika under CAMPA scheme.