Guwahati, Feb 8: It has come to light that National Parks, Wildlife Sanctuaries and Reserved Forest Areas in Assam are reeling under severe encroachment. In a written reply to MLA Phani Bhusan Choudhury’s starred question during the ongoing Assam Assembly Budget Session, Forest Minister Pramila Rani Brahma revealed the shocking data.
It has come to light that around 27% of the Reserved Forest Areas in Assam are under encroachment as 373876.95-hectare area out of the total 1354467.62-hectare area has been encroached upon at present in the state.
Another shocking detail that has come to light is the fact that almost 6737-hectare area in Kamrup(M) is under encroachment. The District with the state’s capital even hasn’t been spared by the encroachers.
National Parks in Assam have fallen prey to the menace of encroachment. It has also come to light that around 662 families are encroaching upon Kaziranga National Park. Also, data reflects that encroachment is going on in Manas National Park and around 912 families are living inside the Park illegally. 1165 families are living illegally inside the Dibru-Saikhowa National Park.
Wildlife Sanctuaries too haven’t been spared by the encroachers. Around 101.885 hectare of Wildlife Sanctuary Area is under encroachment, according to the data revealed by the Minister.
1948 families have been evicted so far across Assam as reported by the Minister but still much remains to be done and if the Govt that has come to power with the slogan of ‘Jati-Maati-Bheti’ will be able to restore ‘Maati-Bheti’ remains to be seen.