KATHMANDU: Urging the ministry concerned to do away with politics in forest sector and devise proper mechanism to protect forests, a national seminar of District Forest Officers and other forest technicians concluded here in the capital today.

“The Ministry of Forest and Soil Conservation should make the forest sector free from politics and zero in on the key issues to save the forests of the nation,” said Devesh Mani Tripathi, president, Nepal Foresters’ Association.

The DFOs expressed concern about the ministry’s haphazard transfer of the employees and unnecessary political pressure. “Such practices have been considerably enhancing deforestation and also creating frustration among the hardworking employees,” said a participant. “The actual reasons behind the rampant deforestation are the political interference and lack of adequate infrastructures to tackle the smugglers,” said Tripathi.

According to him, the foresters came into a consensus that a new and immediate strategy was the only way out to save the dwindling forest. More than 200 forest technicians, including DFOs from all 75 districts, the participants at the seminar.

They proposed a special forest council to look into the transfer and promotion of the employees. “We also recommended the formation of an independent council to oversee the promotion and transfer of the employees,” added Tripathi.

“Nobody knows when one is to be transferred and the DFOs have to take the tension of their transfer rather than put their attention on the duties and responsibilities,” he concluded.