New Delhi, Aug 6 (IANS) India’s forest cover comprises over a fifth – 21.23 percent – of the country’s total geographical area, parliament was told on Thursday.
“As per India State of Forest Report 2013, the total forest cover in the country is 697,898 square kilometers which is 21.23 percent of the total geographical area of the country,” Environment, Forests and Climate Change Minister Prakash Javadekar told the Rajya Sabha in a written reply.
“There is a net increase of 5,871 square kilometers in the forest cover of the country as compared with India State of Forest Report 2011,” he added.
Noting that the density of population has increased in Maharashtra, Karnataka, Chhattisgarh, Odisha and Jharkhand, Javadekar said numerous afforestation projects have been undertaken by the government in order to increase the forest cover and improve the quality of existing forests.
“The ministry has also released Rs.4,994.55 lakh and 1,265.50 lakhs as funds in the financial year 2012-13 and 2013-14 respectively for preparatory activities for implementation of Green India Mission which include institutional strengthening, training, identification of landscapes and preparation of perspective plan for implementation of the project,” he added.