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| Last Updated:08/11/2019

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Forest fund gets Rs 38,000 crore boost

Times of India, New Delhi, 30 April, 2015


Vishwa Mohan,

DELHI: In a move which may give a major boost to the country's efforts to increase its green cover under a law, the Union Cabinet on Wednesday gave its approval for introducing a new legislation in current session of the Parliament.


The proposed law - Compensatory Afforestation Fund Bill, 2015 - seeks to create an institutional mechanism to properly utilize a corpus of Rs 38,000 crore for afforestation and other related works like wildlife care and ecological services under central and state monitoring authorities.


Besides utilizing the unspent accumulated amount (Rs 38,000 crore), the new authorities -- which are to be set up both at the central and state levels -- will also monitor use of fresh accrual of an estimated Rs 6,000 crore per annum to newly created "non-lapsable interest bearing" funds.


The bill is expected to be introduced in Parliament next week. Once the bill is passed, the fund will be distributed among the states and Union Territories (UTs) for aggressive afforestation under a central monitoring mechanism.


"The proposed legislation seeks to provide an appropriate institutional mechanism, both at the Centre and in each state and Union Territory, to ensure expeditious utilization in efficient and transparent manner of amounts realized in lieu of forest land diverted for non-forest purpose", said a statement of the environment and forests ministry.