HYDERABAD: Telangana is all set to create a record by planting 46 crore saplings this monsoon as part of the TRS government's flagship programme, Haritha Haaram, a massive tree plantation drive.
Chief minister K Chandrasekhar Rao will launch it at Gundrampally in Chityal mandal in Nalgonda district on Friday.
Though, the state government had launched it last year, the programme could not take off fully due to lack of rains. Last year, the state had planned to plant 40 crore saplings but could plant only 15 crore.
After the failure of monsoon for two consecutive years, this year the state is receiving good rains, giving fillip to Haritha Haaram.
FOREST COVER: The forest cover in the state is just 24 per cent of the total geographical area. The CM decided to improve the forest cover to 33 per cent in next three to four years. The government set a target of planting 230 crore saplings in four years.
The government's priority is to plant saplings even in the existing 24 pc forest area. Though, on paper, the forest cover is 24 per cent of the geographical area, there trees actually in only half of the area.
"The state government is gearing up to see that all the 24 per cent of the forest area is covered with greenery," officials said.
Apart from the forest area, the state government also concentrated on all the plain areas, residential areas, offices, schools, highways and even graveyards where plantation will be taken up in a mission mode.
As many as 15 national highways pass through Telangana, five of those being the longest. The government has decided to plant saplings on both sides of all the highways, covering more than 7,000-km area.
The state has accorded priority to the Hyderabad-Vijayawada, Hyderabad-Mumbai, Hyderabad-Warangal, Hyderabad-Bengaluru and Hyderabad-Nagpur highways for tree plantation.
The government has planned to plant 10 crore saplings _ 7 crore in HMDA area and 3 crore in GHMC area _ in the current year. All the 25 lakh saplings will be planted in one day on July 11.
Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao will do an aerial survey of the entire stretch of Hyderabad-Vijayawada national highway till the border of Telangana to see first-hand the planting of more than one lakh saplings at a time all along the highway.