People’s role must to conserve forests: Yadav

Kathmandu, June 2:

Minister for Forest and Soil Conservation Matrika Prasad Yadav today said that people’s participation is a must for conservation of forest.

Addressing an interaction on community forest, he said most people should be involved in forest conservation.

“This, however, should not mean that we can tolerate the self-acclaimed groups who show interest in the forestry sector to have their vested interests fulfilled,” he said.

He added the forests in the country have been the centre of attraction for all, ministers, top-level bureaucrats and labourers, who are involved in forestry-related corruption.

“After I assumed the post of Forest Minister, I have been trying to raise the curtains over the chain of smugglers and other corrupt officials. I need strong support to clean the image of the forestry ministry,” he said.

He said he had a plan to increase the number of forest guards to control timber smuggling by security personnel. UML leader Keshav Badal said that increasing the number of guards is not the solution and urged to empower the local communities so that they would be feel themselves more responsible for forest conservation.

The interaction was organised by four forestry related non-government organisations.