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Haritha Haram withers away in Kothagudem

Haritha Haram withers away in Kothagudem
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Neither the district officials and staff nor the Green Brigadiers were interested in protected the saplings that were planted in the district as part...

Kothagudem: Neither the district officials and staff nor the Green Brigadiers were interested in protected the saplings that were planted in the district as part of Haritha Haram programme. The result, almost all the planted saplings were dried up.

The State government has taken up the Haritha Haram programme is a large-scale tree-planting programme to increase the amount of tree cover in the state from 24% to 33%. All the districts across the State have launched the plantation drive.

In Kothagudem district, officials of various departments, volunteers, non-gazetted organisations and common public also participated in the programme with enthusiasm and planted saplings in their areas. Various departments were given targets for plantation.

Competing with other districts, Kothagudem district administration had planted 1.68 crore saplings in the district. District forest department had planted 47 lakh, district rural development agency planted 40 lakh, ITC and Singareni companies have planted 55 lakhs, and police, municipality, irrigation and excise departments also planted saplings in their offices and elsewhere. The saplings were distributed from 93 nurseries present across the district.

Compared to other districts, Kothagudem district needs more green coverage, since there are more industries here. So far the programme was conducted well. But once the target was completed, the officials have allegedly forgotten to take care of the planted saplings. They have reportedly failed to water the plants and protect them from grazing animals.

This showed that the officials are interested in completing the target only and has nothing to do with after care. Hence, almost all the saplings that were planted as part of Haritha Haram programme were dried up or become food for the animals.

When the public questioned the government about the plight of the saplings, then the government hurriedly ordered the district adminstrations to protect the plants. The government directed the officials to form Green Brigades all over the State.

One officer or elected representative per division will be the brigadier along with students, women and employees. These brigades have to look after planting of saplings, setting up of tree guards, watering the plants whenr there are no rains and during summer, arranging water tankers and the like.

But it seems that these teams also not working. Observing the gravity of the situation, District Collector Rajiv Gandhi Hanumanthu ordered the officials to observe every Friday as ‘Water Day’ in villages and urban areas.

They were also directed to take all steps to protect the planted saplings across the district. The Collector told them to submit reports to him on the position of the saplings planted as part of Haritha Haram.

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