President Ram Nath Kovind asks forest officers to provide solutions and not pose problems

President Ram Nath Kovind on Thursday exhorted a group of forest officers to save India’s forests.

Published: 03rd August 2017 10:24 PM  |   Last Updated: 03rd August 2017 10:24 PM   |  A+A-

President Ram Nath Kovind | PTI

By Express News Service

NEW DELHI: President Ram Nath Kovind on Thursday exhorted a group of forest officers to save India’s forests. However, the newly elected President asked them to not pose problems but provide solutions for meeting India’s development requirements. Meeting a group of 89 probationers of the Indian Forest Service 2016-18 course at Rashtrapati Bhavan, Kovind also asked them to be sensitive towards the basic food and fuel wood requirement of millions of poor people, including tribals living in and around forests.
 
“These are simple and hardworking people and look up to you for guidance and reassurance. Please treat them as your partners in management and not as intruders,” Kovind said in his first official engagement after assuming office. The President said India is one of the fastest growing economies in the world and we need to strike a balance between conservation needs and development requirements. He said forests are a potential carbon sink and they could help reduce greenhouse gases in the atmosphere and counter the threat of global warming. “We have set ourselves stiff targets...Your job is not to pose problems but to provide solutions,” Kovind said, adding India’s target is to sequester an additional 2.5 to 3 billion tons of carbon in our forests by 2030
 
Kovind said that the world has woken up to threats to the very survival of humankind due to environmental degradation but added that India has emerged as a global leader in handling complex climate change issues.  “Our national forest policy envisages 33 per cent of the land mass should be under forest cover. You have to find ways and means to enrich the natural forests, and facilitate bringing non-forest areas under tree cover,” the president said while addressing forest officers.
 
The President called forestry a challenging profession and also praised the increase of female officers in forestry. He said, “It was an exclusive domain of men till recent times but thankfully that has changed. It is heartening that more and more lady officers are opting to join the Indian Forest Service. I sincerely hope the lady officers will bring about a meaningful change due to their hard work and dedication. Lady forest officers will not only be able to correct the gender distortion, they will also bring a fresh outlook to the working of your department. This is a welcome development for the country.”

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