Plans to plant one lakh saplings to mark the World Classical Tamil Conference

Forest Minister N. Selvaraj on Tuesday planted saplings on Tidel Park Road at Peelamedu and commenced a drive for planting one lakh saplings in Coimbatore to mark the World Classical Tamil Conference to be held from June 23.

Education Minister K. Anbazhagan, Rural Industries Minister Pongalur N. Palanisamy, Khadi Minister M. Ramachandran and Mayor R. Venkatachalam took part.

Mr. Selvaraj later held a review meeting at the Collectorate on the measures being taken for planting the saplings. He told reporters that Siruthuli was providing 55,000 saplings, Isha Yoga 20,000 saplings and the Forest Department 10,000 saplings. All the saplings would be planted this month. At the planting stage itself, people would be motivated to ensure that the saplings survived.

The Minister also said that a committee of officials was being formed to inspect the saplings every month and ascertain their status to ensure high survival rate. The species planned for Coimbatore were from the shade bearing variety namely Vembu, Vagai and Pungan.

Mr. Selvaraj said to mark the 87{+t}{+h} birth day of the Chief Minister on June 3, as 8.7 lakh saplings would be planted across Tamil Nadu in co-ordination with local bodies.

With regard to man-animal conflict, he said that the government planned to restore the elephant corridors. Coimbatore had nearly 12 such corridors.

The Minister said that the Forest Department, in the last four years, had planted 3 crore saplings in forests and 38,89,000 saplings on padugai lands.