Kerala

Kerala preparing master plan to address man-animal conflicts

Forest Minister A.K. Saseendran has said that a master plan is being prepared to mitigate human-wildlife conflicts in the State.

Replying to a question raised by E.K. Vijayan (Communist Party of India) in the Assembly on Friday, Mr. Saseendran said the government attached paramount importance to the protection of human lives and plantations on the forest fringes.

To evolve a lasting solution, a master plan will be created by an expert team. The project will be implemented soon after a detailed project report is ready, he said.

The Forest Department had launched a number of precautionary measures, including rail, solar-powered and crash-guard steel rope fencing, with financial assistance from the Kerala Infrastructure Investment Fund Board (KIIFB).

‘Inadequate compensation’

Mr. Saseendran said the current compensation being given for crop loss due to wild animal incursions were inadequate. Discussions were being held with the Agriculture Minister to modify the criteria for compensation provided by the Agriculture Department so that farmers would receive more assistance.

Responding to other queries, the Minister said the government was reconsidering its project of mass distribution of seedlings during World Environment Day and Van Mahotsav, since there was wastage on a large scale. Instead, the department had set its sight on identifying institutions and groups committed towards nurturing the plants until maturity.

On Vidyavanam

He said the Vidyavanam project that aimed at creating miniature forests in educational institutions had found encouraging response from stakeholders. While 21 Vidyavanams were created during 2020-21, another 26 had been established during the current fiscal.

Suggestions sought from public

Meanwhile, the Forest Department has invited suggestions from various stakeholders for the purpose of preparing the master plan.

The recommendations made by the public, farmers organisations, environmental organisations, scientists and other experts have been solicited. The suggestions, which can be registered through https://forms.gle/Y5yP3H6fh2hFPCLo9 or the department website, must be submitted within August 10, according to a press note.


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Printable version | Sep 21, 2021 10:51:45 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/kerala/master-plan-on-the-anvil-to-address-man-animal-conflicts/article35626196.ece

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