Kiran Choudhry, Leader of the Haryana Congress Legislature Party (CLP), has asked the BJP Government, led by the Chief Minister, Mr Manohar Lal Khattar, to protect Mangarbani’s ecosystem by providing adequate staff and equipment to the Forest Department which has neither any vehicle nor resources to effectively monitor the forest range in the Aravalis.In a statement issued here today, the former Forest and Environment Minister asked how the staff could perform in the absence of staff and vehicles. Mangar forest, an integral part of the Aravalis, is spread over 20,000 acres and to man this huge area, the Forest Department has just one block officer, one guard and three chowkidars. None of them is equipped with anything more than a lathi.
“This explains the lack of concern and attention paid by the BJP Government to an important issue like this. Its care-two-hoots approach gets confounded by the fact that the forest cover in the state has declined by two per cent. Despite this, illegal mining and cutting of trees is on the rise and goes unchecked, causing destruction of the ecologically sensitive area. It is clear that the BJP Government is not making any effort to control illegal activities and protect the environment, especially the Mangarbari forest cover,” she said.In the absence of necessary equipment and infrastructure, including vehicles for patrolling, the guards are not able to monitor the area effectively. The state government should move into the matter and take corrective measures, Mrs Choudhry demanded.