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Have taken steps to enhance forest dept staff and infrastructure: AAP govt to NGT


Press Trust of India New Delhi
The AAP government has told the National Green Tribunal (NGT) that steps have been initiated to enhance the infrastructure and staff strength of its Forest Department for better preservation and conservation of forests.
The submission was made in a report filed pursuant to the NGT's March 25 order asking whether its December 10, 2015 direction to enhance the Forest Department's staff strength and providing proper infrastructure and equipment to its officials has been complied with.
The March 25 order came on a plea by Delhi resident Aditya N Prasad, a lawyer, alleging that the tribunal's December 2015 direction has not been complied with by the Forest Department.
The earlier direction of the tribunal to enhance Forest Department's strength and infrastructure was issued on Prasad's plea alleging that the department was suffering from "massive deficiencies of manpower resources" due to which it was facing difficulties in preserving and conserving the flora and fauna in the national capital.
Subsequent to the March order, the Forest Department has filed a status report claiming that it has created 49 new forest staff posts and 38 posts of ministerial staff.
Some of these posts, including that of wildlife inspector, forest guard and forest ranger, are yet to be filled and the department has said in its report that the Delhi Subordinate Services Selection Board (DSSSB) has been requested to fill the vacancies.
Apart from that, it had forwarded to the Administrative Reforms Department a proposal for creating 408 additional posts of "frontline forestry staff", which was cut down to 242 and is awaiting concurrence of the Finance Department, the status report has said.
Regarding enhancement of infrastructure and procurement of electronic gadgets, as suggested by the NGT, the department has said it has hired four vehicles from the Ridge Management Board (RMB) fund and two from state budget to facilitate various important and time bound activities of its divisions.
It has also purchased 10 motorcycles for field activities, the department has said in the report and added that the RMB in a meeting held on May 9 had approved setting up of a Geographic Information Systems (GIS) lab in the west forest division.
The work related to installation of the lab is in progress, the report has said.
The matter is likely to be heard next by the tribunal on July 3.

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First Published: Jun 27 2019 | 4:25 PM IST

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