MoRTH pays Rs963.23 crore for reforestation
The Ministry of Road Transport and Highways (MoRTH) has released Rs963.23 crore so far to the Forest Divisions of the States for compensatory afforestation. The top three states as far as the amount released are: Punjab (Rs.243.90 crore); Uttar Pradesh (Rs183.94 crore) and Rajasthan (Rs133.05 crore).
This has been done as the assessment of deforestation cost is beyond the scope of National Highways Authority of India (NHAI). Under the MoEF Acts, Rules and Guidelines, the demand for compensatory afforestation is made by the Forest Department to compensate for the loss of trees. While granting the clearance, NHAI deposits the requisite amount with the Forest Departments for undertaking the compensatory afforestation. The responsibility of the utilization of the amount deposited by NHAI lies with the Forest Department.
This information was provided by Shri RPN Singh, Minister of State for Road Transport and Highways in the Lok Sabha.