September 11, 2015
Tamil Nadu Forest Minister, M.S.M. Anandan today launched the ‘Project Kaliru’, to bring down the man-animal conflict and human and property loss due to elephant attacks.
Speaking after inaugurating the 22nd Annual State Forest Sports Meet here, Anandan said that the project would aim at reducing incidents of man-animal conflicts in the fringe area of forests, where wild elephants frequented in Coimbatore Forest division.
In order to identify and decide on the adequate solatium for loss of crop to the farmer, an “e-compensation” scheme was also launched by the Minister.
The forest cover which was 17 per cent when Chief Minister Jayalalithaa assumed office in 2011, had increased to 18.33 per cent because of her efforts, he said. The target of 33 per cent forest cover set in 1988 was not too far away, he said.
Reeling out various schemes announced by Jayalalithaa since 2011 for the development of Forest Department and the benefit of the public, Anandan said that an Rs.100 crore project was announced to cultivate sandalwood in 10 years.
Moreover Rs.50 crore had been allotted to retrieve Shola forests in the Nilgiris district. In order to provide adequate protection to the people living in the surroundings of forests, the Chief Minister had announced to set up five Rapid Action Force teams in the Nilgiris, Gudalur, Krishnagiri, Tirunelveli and Coimbatore, the Minister said.
Anandan also distributed solatium to the families of those killed by elephants and compensation to those, whose property and crops were damaged.
Lauding the achievement of athletes of Forest Department in the 21st All India Forest Sports meet held in Goa, who bagged 14 gold, 14 silver and six bronze medals, Anandan exhorted them to bring glory to Tamil Nadu, by winning more medals and also individual championship in the 22nd All India Sports Meet to be held in Karnataka in November.