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Green Cover: 12 City Forests Ready in Delhi, Four More Soon, Says Environment Minister Gopal Rai

File photo of AAP leader Gopal Rai.

File photo of AAP leader Gopal Rai.

The objective of the plantation drive is to increase the national capital's green cover from 325 square kilometres at present to 350 sq km by 2021.

Twelve city forests have been developed in the national capital and four more will be ready soon, Environment Minister Gopal Rai told the Centre on Monday.

Five of the 12 city forests are spread in an area of over 10 hectares - the Centre mandates developing Nagar Van (city forest) spread in an area between 10 to 14 hectares.

The five mentioned by the Delhi government have been developed at Nasirpur (28 hectares), Alipur (19.50 hectares), Mitraon Pocket B (35.15 hectares), Taj Enclave (56 hectares), and Hauz Rani (28 hectares), according to the minister.

Work is underway to develop four more city forests at Mamoorpur, Ayanagar, Jaunpur, and Dera Mandi, the minister said during a meeting of states and Union Territories called by Union Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar.

Rai said the Delhi government will work together with the Centre and neighbouring states to find solutions to environmental problems.

He also said the city government has set a target of planting 31 lakh saplings by March 31 next year.

"The Centre has set a target of planting 15 lakh saplings in Delhi. Our target is 31 lakh. We launched a pakhwara recently and planted 10 lakh saplings. I think we will be able to achieve our target by March 31," he said.

The objective of the plantation drive is to increase the national capital's green cover from 325 square kilometres at present to 350 sq km by 2021, he said.

As many as 29.37 lakh saplings were planted in Delhi in 2019 against the target of 24.18 lakh, he said.

The minister said the Delhi government has been providing Rs 20,000 each to eco clubs in 2,000 government schools to build environment consciousness among children.

"The forest and horticulture departments and Delhi Parks and Gardens Society provide saplings to these eco clubs from their nurseries across the national capital," he said, adding the city government will simultaneously implement the Centre's scheme to create nurseries in schools.

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