(MENAFN- IANS) Panaji, Dec 11 (IANS) After drawing flak last year over incidents of forest fire in the state, the BJP government in Goa has decided to keep watch on the sensitive areas using drone technology.
Addressing a press conference here, Forest Minister Vishwajit Rane said that around 10 drones will be purchased as measures to prevent forest fire.
“Initially, 10 drones will be purchased and if needed we will purchase more. Also, around 600 trekkers will be trained to deal with the situation and even locals will be involved if any incidents take place,” Rane said.
“Issues like global warming, weather change and the change in rain patterns are worrying. Now it rains even in November and December. In such a situation, we are taking measures and will involve locals if any incidents take place,” he said.
Rane also said that drones will keep a watch on the forest areas and the government will take action on those who set fire.
“Even if people light fires in their cashew plantations to clean the areas, the forest department will take action. In the end, we are held responsible for forest fires,” Rane said.
According to official records, about 470.22 hectares of forest area were affected by 200 incidents of forest fire from 2019 till March 2023.
The Congress had last year accused the Goa government of trying to convert forest lands into concrete cover by the ways of forest fire.
The Congress had also submitted a memorandum to the principal chief conservator of forest demanding an inquiry into the forest fire incidents. It had also demanded a judicial inquiry under a retired high court judge into the incidents of fire and the damages caused by them.
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