Badal calls for increasing forest cover in Punjab

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Mohali, Oct 7 (UNI) Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal today exhorted the Forests Department to chalk out a strategy to make tree plantation 'a mass movement' in the state so as to save the environment.

The department should involve the general public in this scheme, he said after laying the foundation stone of the Rs 38 crore Forest Complex here. The Complex will be spread over two acres of land.

Mr Badal emphasised the need to bring awareness amongst the masses about the importance of trees and the need to conserve forest cover. Aforestation had resulted in an imbalance in the eco-system, he added.

He asked the Forests Department to motive the people to plant trees in or in front of their houses both in urban and rural areas to cleanse the polluted environment due to heavy emission of deadly industrial gases. He also announced special prizes of Rs 2 lakh and Rs 5 lakh for the best green towns and villages to be selected through a statewide competition by the forest department.

Speaking on the occasion Cooperation Minister Capt Kanwaljit Singh appreciated the efforts of the State Forest Department for setting up this eco-friendly complex.

In his address Forest Minister Tikshan Sood also underlined the significance of forests in the current scenario and hoped that the new forest complex to be constructed would prove to be a milestone in propagating the concept of 'Green Building Design' for the preservation and protection of environment.

UNI HS BP1345

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