Project ‘Sabuja Pahada’ kicks off at Bachhera Hill; 4,000 saplings planted


Bhubaneswar, September 11: In an exemplary display of collective endeavour to protect and preserve the environment through community participation, more than 4,000 saplings of different species were planted at Bachhera Hill in Jatni, a major sub-urban area of Bhubaneswar on Monday to mark the launch of ‘Sabuja Pahada’ (Greening Hillocks) project.

The initiative was launched jointly by the Forest, Environment and Climate Change Department, Bhubaneswar Development Authority (BDA) and Khurda District Administration with an aim to restore, rejuvenate and increase the green cover in the capital city and its outskirts areas.

Jatni MLA Suresh Routray, Commissioner of Police Soumendra Priyadarsi, Bhubaneswar DCP Prateek Singh, Principal Chief Conservator of Forests (PCCF) Debidutta Biswal, BDA Vice Chairman Balwant Singh, Khurda Collector Sudarshan Chakravarthy and Khurda DFO Poornima P graced the event and planted saplings.

Nearly 6,000 people belonging different sections of the society and associations thronged the site early in the morning with great enthusiasm and spirit to participate in the mega plantation programme.

Speaking on the occasion, PCCF Debidutta Biswal said, “With support of all stakeholders such as BDA, Khurda District Administration, we are planting around 8,000 saplings at Bachhera Hill today, which will be converted into an ecological park by BDA in the days to come.”

Nearly 2,000 school students, hundreds of senior citizens and members of Resident Welfare Associations (RWAs), members of Self-help Groups (SHGs), market associations, religious associations, transgender community, NGOs, representatives of political parties and several premier academic institutions such as IIT, NISER and BSF, ITBP personnel, students and staff of Centurian University among others joined the initiative with great interest.

To achieve inclusive development by eliminating environmental imbalance at Bachhera Hill which spreads over 26 acres of land, saplings of wide variety of indigenous species were planted on five hectares of land.

These are Sunari, Jacaranda, Tabibea, Cardia Sabestonia, Patuli, Palash, Gulmohar, Bottle brush, Gangasiuli and Mysore Queen under Flowering Species category. Similarly, Harida, Bahada, Jamun, Seema Kaiya, Mango, Panas, Kaitha, Kantakoli, Ankula, Oau, Ache, Barkoli, Bela, Katha Badam, Bara, Dimiri and Buala are of fruit-bearing species.

Timber species include Teak, Sal, Mai, Rai, Dharua, Asana and Mahogany while Kaju, Katha Badam, Dalchini, Tez Patra and Nutmeg are under Nuts & Spices variety. Saplings of Lord Jagannath Car Timber species include Phasi, Neem, Dharua, Asana, Mai, Rai, Simili, Mahaneem, Paladhua, Gambhari, Moi, Kadamba, Sal and Bandhan were also planted on the occasion.

The entire plantation area has been divided into 11 zones, of which three zones are dedicated for students only while separate zones earmarked for SHG members and senior citizens. The participants’ name were tagged to the sapling which they planted and also tied a rakhi to it to take all required care it needs.

Under the initiative of ‘Sabuja Pahada’, the Forest Department and BDA aim to plant a whopping 30,000 saplings within two weeks in three places. Next plantation drives are scheduled to be held at Sikharchandi Hill and Buddha Jayanti Hillock in the city through community participation.

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