According to an official release here, Jayalalithaa recently announced that teak saplings would be planted over 19,075 hectares at a cost of Rs 39.50 crore.
As part of the announcement, she has now alloted Rs 6.8 crore to plant teak trees at an area of 6,475 hectare in Cudallore, Karur, Tiruchi, Thanjavur, Nagapattinam, Tiruvarur, Perambalur and Tirunelveli districts. Also, she has earmarked Rs 2.97 crore to maintain existing teak farms.
The release said the government led by Jayalalaithaa has been implementing a slew of measures to increase the flora and fauna in the State, and expressed hope that this latest initiative would fulfil the demand in the State for teak, besides preventing soil erosion in the banks of rivers and canals.
Earlier in May this year, making a Statement under Rule 110 in the State Assembly, she announced a slew of measures to increase the green cover in the State, including planting of teak saplings in a 19,075 hectare area and setting up of a new zoological park in Kanniyakumari District.
She said the government would spend Rs 39.49 crore for plantation of teak saplings. She said teakwood trees and teak plantations were found in abdunance in the hilly forest areas of Sathyamangalam, Salem, Theni and Nilgiris Districts. Noting that felling of teak wood trees were banned in sanctuaries and protected forest areas, she said in a bid to increase the green cover, her government had launched a scheme to plant teak saplings in the Cauvery river bed areas.
She said in 2003-04, during her previous regime, a teak plantation scheme was launched under which saplings were planted in 16,050 hectare at a cost of Rs 21.39 crores in the river-bed areas of Thanjavur, Trichy, Madurai, Erode, Salem and Villuppuram Districts over a five year period.
'Following the success of the scheme and considering the demand for teakwood and to ensure more revenue for the government, it has been decided to extend the teak plantation scheme in another 19,075 hectare area', she said.