Deforestation for development draws flak

KATHMANDU: Growing deforestation in line with the recent spur in development works and infrastructural expansion has raised concern among stakeholders.

Forests stretching over an area of 570,000 hectares were strewn with slash over 21 years from 2020 BS to 2041 BS. Likewise, 263,000 hectares of forest area was flattened in Chure Zone alone from 2022 BS to 2037 BS, according to the Chure Sarokar Samaj Nepal.

If this trend continues at the same rate, the Tarai belt would turn into a desert in the next 20 years, stakeholders said.

Moreover, the stakeholders accused political parties' leaders of distributing 356,000 Bighas (1 Bigha= 0.25 Hectare) of land in Tarai during the period to serve their vested political interests.

Samaj Coordinator Nagendra Yadav claimed that the construction of railway tracks, power transmission lines, university, stadium, security camps and airports in the name of development has increased encroachment on the forest area.