Meghalaya Bamboo policy on anvil

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Shillong, Aug 14 (UNI) The Meghalaya government will soon release the State Bamboo Policy to provide a framework for developing and exploiting bamboo resources.

''We are in the process of finalising the State Bamboo Policy to provide a framework for developing and exploiting bamboo resources,'' Chief Minister Donkupar Roy said today.

Releasing the training manual on propagating and cultivating bamboo, Dr Roy said the government also proposed to establish ''Bamboo Development Agency'' to coordinate and guide the development of the resource and the sector.

Meghalaya State Planning Board Chairman Purno A Sangma advocated setting up of Bamboo Technology Park at Nongshram in East Garo Hills for developing and exploiting the bamboo resources in an optimum manner.

''Bamboo-sector development is a high priority thrust area of the state government and the Centre. Thus, there is a need to promote bamboo development for the benefit of rural sector,'' Mr Sangma said.

Meghalaya, located in bamboo rich northeast India is endowed with abundant bamboo resources with natural occurrence of 37 bamboo species. The growing stock is estimated at 2.7 million tonnes.

Due to favourable climatic conditions, he said the average yield in Meghalaya was at 2.7 tonne per hectare, much higher than the national average.

The Chief Minister, however, urged the Forest Department officials to find out the marketing option of the bamboo and its products to uplift the economic condition of the rural population.

''Craft clusters have been supported with design inputs and marketing opportunities but there is much more that needs to be done,'' Dr Roy said.

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