The government initiated on Sunday the biggest environment and forest protection drives in the state by setting the target of planting 13 crore trees during this monsoon, till October.
The exercise is expected to increase the green cover in the state from 20 per cent to 30 per cent. Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis launched the drive by planting a Banyan tree in Varap village of Thane district. State Minister for Forest and Finance Sudhir Mungantiwar, along with his wife Sapna Mungantiwar, also planted mango saplings in the day. Chief Minister, while addressing an event to launch the drive, said, “Today, tree plantation is no longer confined to government… it has become a mass movement.”
The biggest challenge for generation next will be preservation of jungles, water and land, he added. The next phase, Fadnavis said, will involve geo-tagging of the planted trees, to monitor their progress.
Mungantiwar said, “The government plans to attain the target of planting 50 crore trees in four years.” Spiritual leader Sadguru Jaggi Vasudev presented a river rejuvenation plan to Fadnavis during the event.