DK ZP plans to plant saplings on roadside

DK ZP plans to plant saplings on roadside

Dakshina Kannada Zilla Panchayat in association with Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGS) Ombudsman has chalked out a plan to plant saplings beside the roads in all 203 gram panchayats using the funds available under MGNREGS.

It has envisaged to provide employment to all the 74,339 job card holders by way of planting saplings on roadsides.  

The social forestry and horticulture departments have been asked to prepare an action plan, to each gram panchayat.

Speaking to Deccan Herald, Zilla Panchayat CEO Dr K N Vijayaprakash said “the programme not only aims at planting saplings, it involves nurturing by fencing around the plants and watering them during summer. In fact, the name of the person who has planted the sapling will be written on the fence along with the name of the scheme.

The help of various organisations will also be taken to nurture the plants. In fact, saplings will also be planted in the school premises and vacant land belonging to the government in each gram panchayat limits.”

He said instead of planting fast growing saplings, it has been decided to  plant fruit bearing plants. It will not only contribute to the greenery but also will help in generating employment under the scheme.

Ombudsman Sheena Shetty said “The planting of saplings will ensure 100 per cent employment to all the households who have registered under the scheme. Along with planting of saplings, the job card holders can take up the work on developing their land using the funds available under the scheme and also dig percolation ponds in the forest land.”

The process of planting saplings has already been started in Kadeshwalya, Markanja, Niddle gram panchayats. In Kadeshwalya, the drive to plant saplings was taken up last week.

The gram panchayat has received 63 applications from the beneficiaries seeking employment under the scheme to develop their land by planting fruit-bearing saplings and to plant saplings on roadsides.

In Markanja, the gram panchayat in association with Brashtachara Virodhi Janajagruthi Samithi have identified about 33 km road to grow the saplings. The Gram panchayat is preparing the estimate for the same. Brashtachara Virodhi Janajagruthi Samithi convenor K Shankaranarayana Shastri said that there are 620 job card holders in the gram panchayat limits. Once the estimate is ready, we will take up the drive to plant saplings on either sides of the road.

“We want one job card holder to plant at least 20 saplings,” he said. Similarly, the gram panchayat and the Samithi will take up the work on growing greenery especially in government schools, anganwadi centres, on available government land. The government high school in Markanja has nine acre land, which remained unutilised all these years.

"The  villagers have decided to level the land and plant fruit bearing saplings like mango, guava, chikkoo, coconut in the available land. At the same time, the gram panchayat also has two acre land and a veterinary hospital has 75 cents land. All these spacious land will be converted into a green patch by growing fruit bearing trees using the funds available under MGNREGS."

In Niddle gram panchayat, the drive to plant saplings will begin from September 15.

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