The Ceremonial Tree Planting Programme to observe 'Green Mizoram Day' was held at Assam Rifles Ground, Aizawl at 10 AM this morning.

Gracing the programme as Chief Guest, State Level Committee on Green Mizoram Chairman, Mr Lal Thanhawla, Chief Minister, said that mass planting of trees had been organised to demonstrate the government's determination in protecting the flora and fauna of Mizoram and to end further destruction of our environment. He highlighted that under the inititiation and supervision of the government, 16,50,855 saplings had been planted in the state during the last eleven years. He pointed out that the dense forest cover in Mizoram was currently less than 1% of the total land area, and unless strong efforts towards afforestation were taken up immediately, the state could end up in a desert-like situation. The Chief Minister also released a book titled 'Bamboos of Mizoram' published by the  Environment & Forests Department, which contained a detailed study of the bamboos of Mizoram. He stated that Mizoram had the best bamboos in the country, and experts were currently engaged in trying to improve the state economy through profitable use of bamboos. The Chief Minister also said that expansion of Mualkhang Gas Bottling Plant, construction of bigger godown at proposed Sairang railway station, construction of Petrol Retail Outlet at Khawzawl and Thenzawl as well as other important issues had been discussed in his meeting with  Indian Oil Company (IOC) officials held earlier in the morning.

Presiding over the programme, the State Level Committee Vice Chairman Pu H. Rohluna, Environment and Forests Minister, thanked the Sub-Committee on Green Mizoram for organising the programme and said that mass tree planting programme was being held  in all the Districts of Mizoram today. He also stated that while the total green cover in Mizoram was 91.27% (19240, the actual forest area stood only at 0.64 % (134 The most precious legacy we could leave behind for our children was clean environment, and that planting trees was an honourable service to others, he said. He also urged the people of Mizoram to dedicate themselves anew towards conservation of environment, nature and wildlife.

PCCF & Member Secretary Dr S.S.Garbyal also pointed out that life depended on trees, and poor preservation of environment had resulted in drastic changes in climate and weather, as well as gradual drying up of rain water  and rivers. In order to counter this problem, 5000 saplings would be planted around the A.R.Ground and every government department would engage in tree planting along the Melthum-Falkawn highway.

Sub-Committee on Green Mizoram Chairman Mr Lal Thanzara, Parliamentary Secretary, who proposed a vote of thanks, commended all the NGOs, Village Councils, Assam Rifles personnel and NSS Units for their steadfast cooperation and continued support towards the initiatives taken up by the government.


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