Kerala: Poor survival rate of saplings flayed

Half the wages will be cut if the survival rate is below 50 per cent.

Kochi: Though thousands of saplings are being planted under various social forestry schemes in the state every year, their survival rate is poor, leading to wastage of public fund, the state Vigilance and Anti- Corruption Bureau has observed. It found that the supply of poor quality sapling is a major reason while examining an allegation about social forestry programme under the NREGA scheme at Panamaram panchayat in Wayanad district.

“Such programmes should be implemented after ensuring that the saplings are green and have survived for a year. Else public fund is spent over and over, again and again, year after year, without obtaining the desired result,” a directive to the mission director, MGNGRS, said. The state wing of the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme project has directed the joint programme co-coordinators to focus on survival of plants while implementing forestation programmes.

“Now we’re laying focus on enhancing the survival rate of saplings. The employees under the project entrusted with maintenance of the trees will be provided wages only if the trees survive for a minimum three years,” a senior official said. Full wages will be given only on recording 90 per cent survival while 25 per cent cut will be effected if the survival rate is between 75 and 90 per cent.

Half the wages will be cut if the survival rate is below 50 per cent. Also the saplings being planted should be that of fruit-bearing trees. “However, there are external factors too. For instance we’ve planted bamboo in large numbers along the banks of Bharatapuzha at Desamangalam region of Thrissur. However, the sand mafia destroyed evrything. The success stories are also there like the road side trees in Attapadi region,” the official said.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle. )
Next Story