Modi Govt's Major Environment Push: Allocates Rs 47,000 Cr To Increase Green Cover
The Union Ministry of Environment provided a total sum of Rs 47,436 crores to 27 different states under the Compensatory Afforestation Fund.
The corpus will be utilized for compensatory afforestation, wildlife management, forest fire prevention, soil and moisture conservation works in forests, voluntary relocation of villages from protected areas, management of biological resources and biodiversity, research in forestry and monitoring of CAMPA (Compensatory Afforestation Management and Planning Authority) works among others.
Odisha received the largest sum of approximately Rs 6000 crores, followed by Chattisgarh that received Rs 5791 crores and Madhya Pradesh Rs 5196 crores. Kerala received the lowest amount of Rs 81.59 crores.
The 27 states which have received the funds are Odisha, Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh, Jharkhand, Maharashtra, Telangana, Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan, Andhra Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh, Arunachal Pradesh, Gujarat, Karnataka, Haryana, Punjab, Assam, Bihar, Sikkim, Manipur, Goa, West Bengal, Mizoram, Tripura, Meghalaya, Tamil Nadu and Kerala.
Compensatory Afforestation Fund is the funds collected under the CAMPA (Compensatory Afforestation Fund Management and Planning Authority) Act as compensation for clearing up forest lands.
The compensatory funds can only be used for activities listed under the CAF Act. These include the treatment of catchment area, wildlife management, forest fire-prevention, soil, and moisture conservation work in the forest. None of it can be used to set up infrastructure, office equipment, travel allowances or payment of salary.
After presenting cheques to senior officials in state forest administration, the Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar expressed his concerns regarding the implementation of the CAF Act.
Javadekar said that the center would use geographic tagging technology to keep a check on the states to ensure expeditious utilization of the funds provided to them. He further mentioned that the funds transferred would be in addition to the state budget so that the budgets for forests remain unaltered.