New Delhi, Feb 12 : Forest Secretaries and officials of Forest Departments from all over the country will meet here today to discuss issues relating forest areas, management of protected areas, man-animal conflicts, and other forest and wildlife related issues.
This two-day conference is being organised by the Ministry of Environment and Forests.
Forest Secretaries, Principal Chief Conservators of Forests and Chief Wildlife Wardens from all the States and Union Territories will discuss issues relating to increasing forests and tree cover in the country.
To achieve the target of National Forest Policy 1988 to increase the forest cover of the country, radical reforms and concerted actions will also be discussed.
The conference will deliberate on a unique proposal to develop plantation banks to facilitate the compensatory afforestation through Green Credit Scheme.
Besides this, implementation of scheduled tribes and other traditional forest dwellers (Recognition of Forest Rights) Act 2006, tiger conservation, man-animal conflicts, better facilities for front-line staff, recommendations of National Forests Commission and Forest Protection including wildlife conservation will be taken into consideration.
The main thrust of the conference will be on progress of the implementation of the management plans of protected areas and man-animal conflicts.
The management plans are important tools for scientific management of protected areas. If they are based on sound scientific and ecological data, they help in augmenting water resources of respective region. The National Wildlife Action Plan (2002-2016) has also emphasised this.
The man-animal conflicts spread over the country in a variety of forms, including monkey menace of the urban centers, crop raiding by ungulates and wild pigs, depredation by elephants and cattle and human lifting by tigers and leopards. These are results of degradation of habitats, depletion of the natural prey base, changing crop patterns and others.
The conference will discuss on various aspects and management interventions to mitigate these conflicts.
Representatives from Ministry of Tribal Affairs, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (AYUSH), Ministry of Panchayati Raj, Ministry of Agriculture, Ministry of Rural Development and Planning Commission will also attend the conference.
The officials of the Ministry of Environment and Forests and its Institutions such as Wildlife Institute of India, Forest Survey of India, Indira Gandhi National Forest Academy, Indian Plywood Research and Training Institute (IPRTI), Indian Council Forestry Research and Education, Indian Institute of Forest Management will also participate in this conference.