Minister for Forest, Environment and Ecology, Choudhary Lal Singh today inaugurated Girdhari Lal Dogra Model Nursery at Haria Chak of Tehsil Hiranagar in District Kathua. The nursery is spread over an area of 26 hectares of land and will be able to nurture 50 lakh saplings of 80 different varieties of plants and is the only nursery of its kind in the state developed by the State Forest Research Institute (SFRI).Speaking on the occasion, the Minister said that forests are imperative not only for maintaining the ecological balance, protection of wild life, boosting the Agricultural protection but also help in resource fullness of the state.MLA Kathua Rajeev Jasrotia, MLA Hiranagar Kuldeep Raj, Vice Chairman of J&K State Advisory Board for Welfare & development of OBCs, Rashpaul Verma, Daughters of Girdhari Lal Dogra, Former Finance Minister of the state and MP, Sangeeta Jaitley and Nidhi Sharma besides PCCF A K Singh, Chairman SPCB Ravi Kesar, Dir SFRI B M Sharma, MD SFC Suresh Gupta, CCF Jammu Roshan Jaggi, Dir. Environment and Remote Sensing O P Sharma, Dir Social Forestry A K Gupta, Chief Wildlife Warden Suresh Chug and DFOs were also present on the occasion. The Minister stressed the need of urban forestry to raise the green cover in the state. Highlighting various works initiated by the forest department to control the carbon emission and maintaining ecological balance, Lal Singh said that Green corridor along the National Highway is an ambitious project from Lakhanpur to Baramulla which will helps in a great way to curb pollution emanating from vehicular traffic.
Choudhary Lal Singh also said that 43000 km fencing is required to cover the entire forests of J&K which will help in preventing encroachment of forest land along with proper security of forest infra. He further added that conservation of water bodies along with rescue of endangered species of animals are the priority of the forest department.The Minister also directed the Forest officers for massive afforestation on the vacant urban forest land. He said that plantation should be promoted by involving the communities of the concerned areas so that damage caused by the deforestation can be compensated.Sangeeta Jaitley and Nidhi Sharma, daughters of Girdhari Lal Dogra expressed their gratitude for inaugurating the nursery having their fathers name and said that it’s a tribute to their father who worked hard to resolve the miseries of the common man and it’s indeed a privilege that after 30 years of his death, people still love him and regard him.Legislators Rajeev Jasrotia and Kuldeep Raj appreciated the work done by the Forest Minister and extended thanks for naming the model nursery in the name of one of the tallest personality of the state who works for the uplift of the society without any bias.