Forest Secretary visits Hokersar, Haigam wetlands, reviews conservation works

Srinagar October 07 (KNS):  Commissioner Secretary Forest Sanjeev Varma (IAS) today inspected Hokersar and Haigam wetlands and reviewed the progress of ongoing conservation works. 

Rashid Naqash Regional Wildlife Warden Kashmir presented the factsheet of wetlands at the outset of field visit and briefed commissioner secretary about nature of ongoing works under implementation in wetlands. He said water channels, embankment and desilting works are in progress for creating conducive habitat for migratory fauna.  Wooden artifacts, benches, gazebos, tree houses etc are being constructed for providing facelift to Hokersar premises, he added. 

Commissioner Secretary instructed wildlife officials to complete the water management works pronto so that desired facilities get ready at the time of arrival of migratory birds. He instructed to use local eco-friendly material for facelifting of Hokersar premises and install environmental signages at different places so that it evolves as important knowledge centre and becomes favorite tourist destination for tourists in Srinagar. At Haigam wetland, Commissioner secretary Forest directed Wildlife authorities to secure wetland area by developing fence line along the boundary. He also adviced to promote bird watching in Haigam by creating facilities for boarding, lodging and camping. 

The Commissioner Secretary Forest visited Baramulla Forest Division where he was given presentation by Conservator of Forests Irfan Rasool about type of ongoing forestry activities under progress in north circle. He was informed that 7.5 lakh plants shall be planted in north Kashmir under Green J & K Drive this year. He was informed that forest divisions of north circle have stocked sufficient quantities of conifer and broadleaved species in their nurseries to achieve the plantation targets.

Commissioner Secretary paid visit to Central Forest Nursery Baramulla to take firsthand assessment of preparedness for winter plantation. He directed to raise fast growing timber species in nurseries so that farmers can be familiarized and encouraged to grow trees outside forests on their farm lands.

Commissioner Secretary also visited Biodiversity Park Venkara in Doabgah forest range where he inspected different facilities established in the park. He appreciated the works of herbal vatika and eco-friendly objects developed by the Jhelum Valley Forest Division for conservation and outreach activities. He adviced officials to conduct extensive school outreach programmes and engage children in tree planting, cleanliness drives and water conservation activities so that concept of  environment compassion is inculcated in them at young age. 

Pervaiz Ahmad Wani DFO Jhelum Valley Forest Division, Ifshan Deewan Wildlife Warden Wetlands, Muzaffer Bazaz Dy. Director Forest Protection Force Baramulla and Mohammad Maqbool Baba Wildlife Warden North Kashmir were present with the commissioner Secretary.(KNS)

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