The drive will begin on World Environment Day on June 5, says Mayor D. Venkatesh Murthy

The Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) will plant four lakh saplings across the city, declared Mayor D. Venkatesh Murthy here on Thursday.

After a meeting with the Principal Chief Conservator of Forests A.K. Verma along with Commissioner M.K. Shankarlinge Gowda, he said the drive will begin on June 5, World Environment Day.

“These saplings will be planted on BBMP properties, forest and defence land and Gandhi Krishi Vignan Kendra (GKVK) campus. Priority will be given to hardy, indigenous species with deep roots, such as tamarind and honge,” Mr. Murthy said.

The BBMP and the Forest Department will come up with a comprehensive plan for the project.

“We will also ensure that enough funds are allocated to lake development and sapling plantation. This will go a long way in preventing flooding in the city.”

Tree census

Mr. Gowda said a tree census was in the offing and will be taken up on a pilot basis in Hampinagar ward.

“The proposal has already been forwarded to the Standing Committee for Horticulture for approval. After the BBMP Council approves it, the survey will be taken up at a cost of around Rs. 3 crore,” he said.

The survey would help the BBMP identify the different species of trees, their age and condition as also the species prone to being uprooted during the monsoon.

“By planting species with deep roots, we will be aiding the groundwater recharge process.”

The BBMP hoped to increase the city's tree cover. The GKVK had agreed to provide 500 acres to the BBMP to plant various saplings.

Tree parks

Tree parks on 250 acres would be established in the city, Mr. Gowda said.

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