Begin typing your search above and press return to search.

Centre asks State to fill up vacancies

By Prabal Kr Das

GUWAHATI, May 8 � For a state that contains rich biodiversity, this should come as a wake up call. With several of Assam�s protected areas suffering from shortage of frontline staff, the Union Minister for Environment and Forests, Jairam Ramesh, has now asked the State Government to fill the posts which have been lying vacant.

A communication to this regard reveal the urgency that Ramesh has brought to the matter. His letter mentions the paramount importance that should be given to frontline staff, if flora and fauna have to be protected, forest cover is to increase, and the impact of climate change mitigated.

Seeking immediate attention from the highest level, the Union Minister has written to Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi, along with other Chief Ministers of other states, urging their personal intervention to ensure that the vacant posts of frontline staff, that is staff which is at the grassroots level (Assistant Conservator of Forests and below), in the State Forest Departments be filled as soon as possible.

In his communication, Ramesh refers to his personal interactions with frontline

forestry staff - forest guards, forest rangers, and foresters - in various corners of the country. He commended them for the work they were doing against great odds and in difficult terrain.

He urged the authorities to use a share of the forestry grant under the 13 th pay commission to provide infrastructure and support to the frontline staff, and went to say that efforts must be made to give them more opportunities to upgrade skills required to meet new challenges in forest management.

According to official figures, Assam has a sanctioned strength of more than 7,300 posts, against which nearly 1,270 have been lying vacant. What is more, many of the front line staff are ageing, which has constrained monitoring and anti-poaching tasks in a number of national park and sanctuaries.

According to a well-placed source in the State Forest Department, the issue of recruiting frontline staff has been alive since the time a ban on recruitment came into force, and become more crucial as some protected areas have expanded and new ones notified. There was a need to increase the sanctioned strength also, he added.

It was further revealed that around 600 recruitments took place recently and another 800 will be made in the next four to five months. The latter would form the second battalion of the Assam Forest Protection Force that would work exclusively for the protection of wildlife. This step is expected to boost anti-poaching measures in protected areas such as Kaziranga, Orang and Manas, among others.

In another development, the Union Forest Minister has scotched reports in a section of the media that plans were on to stop tourism in Tiger Reserves of the country. He said that tourism is essential and revenues generated should flow into the management of the reserves.

Next Story
Similar Posts
Centre asks State to fill up vacancies

GUWAHATI, May 8 � For a state that contains rich biodiversity, this should come as a wake up call. With several of Assam�s protected areas suffering from shortage of frontline staff, the Union Minister for Environment and Forests, Jairam Ramesh, has now asked the State Government to fill the posts which have been lying vacant.

A communication to this regard reveal the urgency that Ramesh has brought to the matter. His letter mentions the paramount importance that should be given to frontline staff, if flora and fauna have to be protected, forest cover is to increase, and the impact of climate change mitigated.

Seeking immediate attention from the highest level, the Union Minister has written to Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi, along with other Chief Ministers of other states, urging their personal intervention to ensure that the vacant posts of frontline staff, that is staff which is at the grassroots level (Assistant Conservator of Forests and below), in the State Forest Departments be filled as soon as possible.

In his communication, Ramesh refers to his personal interactions with frontline

forestry staff - forest guards, forest rangers, and foresters - in various corners of the country. He commended them for the work they were doing against great odds and in difficult terrain.

He urged the authorities to use a share of the forestry grant under the 13 th pay commission to provide infrastructure and support to the frontline staff, and went to say that efforts must be made to give them more opportunities to upgrade skills required to meet new challenges in forest management.

According to official figures, Assam has a sanctioned strength of more than 7,300 posts, against which nearly 1,270 have been lying vacant. What is more, many of the front line staff are ageing, which has constrained monitoring and anti-poaching tasks in a number of national park and sanctuaries.

According to a well-placed source in the State Forest Department, the issue of recruiting frontline staff has been alive since the time a ban on recruitment came into force, and become more crucial as some protected areas have expanded and new ones notified. There was a need to increase the sanctioned strength also, he added.

It was further revealed that around 600 recruitments took place recently and another 800 will be made in the next four to five months. The latter would form the second battalion of the Assam Forest Protection Force that would work exclusively for the protection of wildlife. This step is expected to boost anti-poaching measures in protected areas such as Kaziranga, Orang and Manas, among others.

In another development, the Union Forest Minister has scotched reports in a section of the media that plans were on to stop tourism in Tiger Reserves of the country. He said that tourism is essential and revenues generated should flow into the management of the reserves.