I am residing at Burla Central Lane. Due to illegal felling of trees by the local people and timber mafias the Jhankarani hill at “O” Point near Burla town was denuded. To make the situation worse, people were setting fire to the forest for their selfish interest due to which the tree could not grow properly and there was excessive heat around the hill. People were complaining of burning heat while passing through that hill.
Seeing the deterioration of environment, I have taken a vow to save the trees and save the forest by creating new forest. For the purpose, I have mobilized 20 friends and made a group; got the support of forest department, police department, and other government and social functionaries. Kamala Biswal of NSS department of Sambalpur University has extended us a lot of support. We have touched every household of local villages and organized meetings to create awareness to save the forest and to create new forest. We have offered them work to create forest & paid them whatever they were earning by cutting woods from the forest. We have also arranged work for them requesting the contractors of Hirakud dam dam road. We had taken the help of police and dam political people to fight against vested interest persons.
Every year we could able to plant around 10,000 saplings, mostly we get free of cost from various agencies .we have created a forest within last 3 years. The trees have grown up now. Those people, who were apposing & earning their livelihood by cutting woods from the forest, are earning their livelihood by creating and protecting the forest. Presently, it is a hot destination for picnickers across the state.
The message of Citizen SBI Programme has made me more determined and inspired me to contribute even more to improve and protect the newly created forest by which we could able to create environment awareness within our society. We have now started building a temple there with rest shed and room facility for picnickers with the assistance of corporate like Mahanadi Coal Field.
Contributed by Sri P C Nayak, Bhubaneswar