Updated on 5 Jul 2021, 5:31 am
As tree plantation drive is being carried out by various groups across the state, a green earth group has drawn the Manipur government's attention to introduce a special law or provision to protect trees and plants in non-forest areas of the state.
"It is unfortunate that there is no provision or law in the state that prevents people from cutting down trees and plants at will in non-forest areas or private lands," said Laishram Deban, convenor, Voluntary Network for a Green Earth Manipur.
In view of the lack of law, Deban made an appeal to the state government to introduce a special law to protect trees and plants in non-forest areas of the state. He made the appeal during a tree sapling plantation drive carried out at the stretch from Khangabok to Ikop Pat on the banks of Arong River, on Sunday.
The event was organised by Voluntary Network for a Green Earth Manipur under the theme of ‘Plant trees and get water’ as a part of Van Mahotsav 2021.
During the event, Deban said the state is facing acute shortage of rainfall as a result of rampant cutting down of trees. Now, people are facing difficulties due to water shortage as Singda Dam, which is the major source of water supply for Imphal, is drying up.
“If the present trend continues, the state will face acute water crisis; so it is imperative that we start planting and conserving trees in order to prevent such a situation and spare us from the curses of future generations,” he said.
Pointing out that the state has been celebrating Van Mahotsav with tree saplings being planted since 1950, Deban said it is time to reflect on why people are still suffering due to disturbances in the ecological balance.
While also pointing out the absence of law in the state that prevents people from cutting down trees and plants at will in non-forest areas or private lands, he said most people also forget to ensure the saplings they have planted grow into full-grown trees, the environmentalist added.
Deban further made a public appeal to people in the hills and valley of the state to stop cutting trees and cultivate the habit of planting tree saplings instead. He then called for ‘A Selfie with Tree’ at the turn of the year after a sapling has been planted.
Voluntary Network for a Green Earth said it had planted over 7,000 tree saplings till date and 6,000 of them have flourished into full-grown trees.
THOUBAL district, Manipur