DELHI:EROS TIMES: The biggest ever mass plantation drive in the history of Delhi will be launched by the Chief Minister, Arvind Kejriwal on Saturday, when the citizens will plant five lakh trees and shrubs at 600 locations spread across the national capital.
The unprecedented drive aims to effectively enhance the green cover of Delhi which will have a long-lasting effect on air pollution control.
More than 1.25 lakh school children will also participate in the plantation drive on Saturday, during which the participants will be made aware of the harmful effects of air pollution and the importance of greening in countering this growing menace.
The aim of planting more than five lakh saplings in a day is unprecedented in the plantation history of Delhi as not more than 50,000 samplings in a day have ever been planted in the city in the past.
Environment and Forests Minister Imran Hussain reviewed the preparation for the mega plantation drive with the senior officials of concerned departments and greening agencies on Wednesday.
The meeting was attended by all senior officers of the Environment and Forest departments, Delhi Pollution Control Committee, District Magistrates, SDMs, senior officers of the three MCDs, Delhi Development Authority, Delhi Parks and Gardens Society, New Delhi Municipal Council, Delhi Cantonment Board, Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC), CPWD, PWD; Education & Health Departments, DSIIDC, Delhi Jal Board, Delhi Urban Shelter Improvement Board (DUSIB) and the Power Discoms.
In this endeavor, the Delhi government is seeking active participation of local residents, Resident Welfare Associations, market associations, Eco-clubs, school and college students etc., with the purpose to create awareness about air pollution and means to combat the adverse effects of air pollution by carrying out plantation.
During the meeting, the greening agencies assured their resolve to plant sapling of trees and shrubs as per targets committed by them. It was also informed that the greening agencies have already communicated the details of sites/locations where the plantation will be carried out on Saturday.
Officers of the Forest Department informed the Minister that details of around 600 sites/locations spread all over Delhi have been uploaded on the website of the Forest Department.
A helpline having toll free no. 1800118600 has already started functioning for facilitating the general public to know the location as per their convenience for participation in plantation drive on Saturday.
During the meeting, the Minister again urged the green agencies to make adequate arrangements for availability of sufficient saplings, proper sitting, light refreshment and drinking water etc. for the convenience of participants.
The Minister also directed all the greening agencies to ensure timely digging of pits, supply of manure, tree/ shrubs saplings, tree guards, fencing and other essential facilities for the plantation drive.
It was also emphasized that greening agencies should not only carry out plantation but also ensure high survival rate for effectively making the plantation drive successful.
Hussain also asked the District Magistrates and Sub-Divisional Magistrates-to coordinate and monitor plantation drive within their respective Districts.
They were also also asked to ensure mobilization of residents, students, NGOs, Market Associations, Lions Club, Rotary Club etc.
The Minister also asked the agencies to make necessary arrangements for independent audit so as to monitor survival rate of plantation.
It was also directed that feasibility of procuring machines for Geo-tagging of plantation be explored at the earliest so as to trace and keep track of the survival of plantation.