Bengal Govt restoring green cover of the Sunderbans
Through the planting of a few lakh sal, segun and sundari trees, and mangrove plants, which are all native to the region, the State Government is restoring the green cover over a large area of the Sunderbans (in South 24 Parganas district) that had become almost barren because of illegal felling over a long period of time. During the Left Front rule, illegal felling was rampant here.
This work has been going on over the last four years, and now the area is covered with trees, as it should be. Preservation of the environment has also led to the growing back of mangrove plants, which are crucial to maintaining the ecological balance of any deltaic region.
Not just the administration, environmentalists are also full of praise for this massive effort being undertaken by the Bengal Government.
The trees have been planted over an area of 7,221 bighas, of which 4,731 bighas are covered by the native mangrove species, which grow only in brackish water. The South 24 Parganas zilla parishad is directly responsible for the work.
Among the other developmental work carried out in the Sunderbans region by the State Government are the digging of 33 freshwater lakes, building of 18.12 kilometres of irrigation canals, distributing of Kisan Credit Cards to 87 per cent of farming families, setting up of 1,112 tube-wells, and distributing of 125 poly-houses and 263 greenhouses.
In this connection, it needs to be mentioned that Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee has recently declared that Sunderbans would be soon declared a separate district. This would enable more focused development of the region.