Delhi Govt to form Parks and Garden Society for 'greening' city

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New Delhi, Jan 21 (UNI) The Delhi Government today decided to set up a Parks and Gardens society, which will create green sinks in the 15000 existing parks and gardens in the city, to check depletion of the capital's green cover.

These green sinks would provide for absorption of carbon emission in the city, Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit said at a press conference.

The decision was taken at a Cabinet meeting today.

Giving details, Ms Dikshit said the Society will work with the local bodies--the MCD and the NDMC--to raise the green cover. ''The MCD has 14,000 parks and the NDMC has about 1000 parks in its jurisdiction.

The society will maintain the green spaces and undertake tree plantation and aim to increase the green cover in Delhi from 19 per cent to 33 per cent, raising it from 326 sq km to 50 sq km.'' The Resident Welfare Associations, NGOS and Corporates will also be involved in the project, she said.

The MCD would also be consulted before taking any concrete action in this regard, and the success of the project will depend on its cooperation, she pointed out.

The Society, with the Chief Minister as its patron and Chief Secretary as the CEO, will have an initial corpus fund of Rs three crore and can access funds from the MPLAD, MLA funds and bhagidari assistance.

A grant would also be released to enable creation of an eco-friendly outlet outside each garden and park, for covering the maintenance expenses and making each green space to run on a self-sustaining basis.

The contribution by registered body and the Government grant will be pooled in a ratio, based on the principle that Government contributes more for parks in under-developed areas, she said.

Apart from efforts to green these stretches, nine new city forests will be developed, in addition to the already existing 14, she said.

The Chief Minister said with the Commonwealth Games in 2010, several infrastructure projects like new flyovers, underpasses, extension of metro line and high speed bus corridor had to completed and these projects involved tree cutting in public interest. Stressing that there was need for compulsory afforestation, she said for every tree that was cut, ten trees would have to planted and five trees for one tree translocated. ''Compensatory afforestation may not be possible in its vicinity, but at least we can try ten per cent of it,'' she added.


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