#Similipalforestfire: Centre to send committee of experts to provide technical help


New Delhi: The Centre will send a committee of experts to Odisha for providing technical assistance for effective management of forest fire incidents in Similipal National Park of Mayurbhanj district and nearby areas in the state.

Union Environment, Forest and Climate Change Minister Prakash Javadekar on Wednesday informed this after Union Minister Dharmendra Pradhan and BJP MPs from Odisha met him.

They submitted a memorandum seeking his personal intervention in containment of fire in the national park and other forests in the state.

In a tweet, Javadekar informed that ministry is sending a committee of experts to Odisha to give technical advise and help out state forest department in effective management of forest fire incidents in the region.

He said the experts will work in coordination with the deployed team for early and effective dousing of fire.

“Will be reviewing the situation with my team at @moefcc on a daily basis,” the Minister said.

“We are distressed to inform you that the Forest Survey of India’s (FSI’s) fire alerts system and satellite pictures of NASA’s Fire Information for Resource Management System show thousands of fires engulfing huge tracts of green cover in Similipal, Karanjia forest division in Mayurbhanj district, Kuldiha Sanctuary in Nilgiri, Boudh Forest Division, Malayagiri in Angul district, Khandagiri hills in Bhubaneswar, Sunabeda and other adjoining areas. The blaze has also engulfed forests in Thakurmunda, Kendumundi, Naona, Gudagudia, Bareipani, Dudhiani, Satkosia as well as many other green tracts,” the MPs mentioned in the memorandum.

They said it is critical to address these ongoing forest fires immediately with swift and coordinated action between the Central and state forest departments while coming up with a long-term plan for prevention and mitigation of further forest fires in Odisha.

“We seek your personal intervention in convening a meeting with officials of your Ministry and the State Government for launching urgent measures to contain and subdue the forest fires in Odisha, assess the damage to forest land, flora & fauna as well as communities dependent on forests for their livelihood and take suitable remedial and reparative actions in this regard,” the MPs urged.

They also requested the Union Minister to set up an empowered committee with representatives from the Central and state forest department officials, environmentalists and forest conservationists for coming up with a detailed long-term action plan for preventing and mitigating future forest fires in Odisha.