A tree-planting drive was organised by the district administration, NN Foundation and Rotary Club at DLF Phase 1, Gurgaon, on Monday.
PWD and Forest Minister Rao Narbir Singh was the chief guest at the occasion. "Apart from planting saplings, it is equally important to ensure their upkeep,” said Singh. "Saplings will be planted on both sides of the national highways passing through the state. An agreement has been signed with the Union Ministry of Road Transport and Highways for the purpose."
The minister said that besides the Forest Department, panchayats, institutions and social organisations should come forward to plant saplings on vacant government and panchayat lands.
He said several places had been identified across the state where the forest area will be increased, and expressed concern that the area under forest cover had been reduced due to rapid urbanisation, widening of roads and doubling of railway tracks. "Trees will be axed only where it is imperative," he added.
The minister urged people to plant saplings on different occasions such as birthdays, marriages, anniversaries and festivals to make them more memorable.
"Reducing the number of trees and plants not only leds to the outbreak of various diseases, but also diminishes the groundwater-level," he added.
A unique scheme, "Har Ghar Hariyali-Haryana Ki Khushyali", was launched in the state on the occasion of Van Mohotsav last year, with a view to making every house green. Under the scheme, people were encouraged to plant saplings in both rural and urban areas.