New Delhi: The Delhi Government under the leadership of CM Arvind Kejriwal has taken a significant step towards increasing the city's green cover. The state government will be commencing a mega plantation drive from 26th February. The drive aims to plant 52 lakh trees this year and will be launched at Bela Farm by Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal himself with the planting of 20,000 trees. The Delhi Government aims to involve the entire state in this plantation drive and is calling upon residents to come forward and participate. Announcing the drive’s launch, Environment and Forests Minister Gopal Rai said, "We want to make Delhi green, and the plantation drive is one of the major initiatives to achieve our goal. We request all residents of Delhi to come forward and actively participate in the drive, so that together we can make our city more beautiful and healthy." At large, the Mega Plantation Drive is a significant initiative to make the city greener, cleaner, and healthier for the residents of Delhi. It will help in reducing pollution levels and create a more sustainable environment for the future. Earlier in the day Gopal Rai chaired a meeting over the government’s plantation drives and directed the formation of an expert committee to oversee third-party audits. This committee will assess whether the trees are planted in the right manner and cared for properly, resulting in a healthy growth of the plants.
The meeting was attended by more than 30 agencies, including senior officials from the Forest Department, Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD), Education Department, New Delhi Municipal Council (NDMC), Delhi Jal Board (DJB), Environment Department, Delhi State Industrial and Infrastructure Development Corporation (DSIIDC), Central Public Works Department (CPWD), North Delhi Power Limited (NDPL), Irrigation and Flood Control Department (IFCD), Northern Railway, Biodiversity and Parks Management Committee, and other relevant organisations.
After the meeting, Gopal Rai made several important announcements about the tree plantation drive. He stated that the Delhi government has set an ambitious target of planting 52 lakh saplings this year, including 20 lakh big trees, 25 lakh shrubs, and 7 lakh saplings to be distributed to the people of Delhi. Last year, the government had set a target of planting 42 lakh saplings, but ended up planting more than the target by planting 47 lakh saplings. This year, the forest department has been assigned the target of planting the maximum number of trees - 18 lakh saplings - while other agencies will also contribute towards the initiative with NDMC planting 5 lakh, Education Department 4.5 lakh, MCD 4 lakh and DDA 9 lakh.
During the meeting, Gopal Rai expressed his gratitude to the people of Delhi and all the agencies that have been working tirelessly to reduce pollution in the city.
The Minister emphasised the importance of the tree plantation drive and informed that the government has set a higher target this year as compared to last year. He said, "This includes 20 lakh fully grown trees and 25 lakh shrubberies. The people of Delhi will be encouraged to plant 7 lakh saplings in and around their homes.”