DEHRADUN: With temperatures soaring forest fires starting to rage in Uttarakhand forests, state forest department is mulling to revise compensation for the damages to flora.
Nishant Verma, nodal officer, forest fires said, "We have roped in institutions which are working in the field of forest fire management and soon the revised rates will be implemented. This will help assess the damages in modern terms when it comes to monetary damages which will result in better mitigation."
Fire season in the hill state starts around February 15 and goes on till the monsoon arrives. At present, damages for compensation are calculated according to per hectare forests, plants destroyed in the forest fires. For a plant which is a year old the compensation is Rs 22 while a five-year-old plant will get Rs 32.
For fires in the forests the damages are calculated by measure of land - between Rs 336-1,200 per hectare.
Officials of the state forest department said that the rates of the damages are too less and need to be revised. Total 86 incidents of forest fires have been reported this year destroying 104.27 hectares of forest area.
In 2021, a total of 2,813 forest fire incidents occurred destroying 3,943.88 hectares of forest land. In last 12 year total 30,245.30 hectares of forest area has been engulfed by forest fires.
Officials from the state forest department said volunteers have been recruitment at local level to control the damage as well as other means such as friend, water tablets and more than 300 vehicles have been pushed into service for prevention.