‘Theni ahead of other districts with 36.72 % forest cover’

Forests Minister K. Ramachandran hands over welfare assistance to a beneficiary in Theni on Saturday.  


With 36.72 % forest cover, Theni district stood ahead of many other districts in Tamil Nadu and the district’s figure is also higher than the State average of 33%. The government would take measures to maintain the green cover intact and at the same time protect the interests of farmers and tribal people, said Forests Minister K. Ramachandran here on Saturday.

Addressing a review meeting at the Collectorate, which was presided over by Collector K.V. Muralidharan, the Minister said the demands placed before the officials by the farmers, tribal people and other stakeholders would be examined and the government would spell out its stand after his discussions with Chief Minister M.K. Stalin.

During the meeting, the farmers demanded roads inside the forest areas, permission for grazing their cattle, compensation to legal heirs of those who were killed after attacks by wild animals, permission for visitors in Suruli waterfalls and laying of Kurangani-Top Station road in the district.

The Minister said the government had the responsibility of protecting both the forest cover and the habitations around them. Due importance would be given to the representations from the tribal community, he said.

He also said preservation of the forest cover and good upkeep of the forests had resulted in widespread rainfall in the Western Ghats which was a major source of drinking water of the Vaigai, which took care of five districts – Theni, Sivaganga, Dindigul, Madurai and Ramanathapuram.

Mr. Ramachandran said the effective management of the forests in Theni and Megamalai regions by joint patrolling teams and surveillance had resulted in rare birds visiting the region. There were also elephants, leopards, guars and other wild animals spotted deep inside the forests.

Senior officers from the Forest department, including Ashok Uprithi, Sekar Kumar Neeraj, Deepak Srivatsava, V. Naganathan, Deepak S. Bilji, S. Anand and S. Vidya, and Theni Superintendent of Police Praveen Umesh Dongre participated in the meeting.

Later, the Minister gave away cheques for ₹12.50 lakh to self-help groups under the revolving fund scheme to seven groups, comprising 15 members each.

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Printable version | Dec 8, 2021 10:07:16 AM |

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