AIZAWL, June 3 � The flagship programme of the Congress party in Mizoram, New Land Use Policy (NLUP) has played a major role in improving the livelihood of thousands of poor families across the State.
In fact, the Central Government has approved Rs 2,416 crore for implementation of NLUP in the State.
As per government officials today, the State Government has distributed Rs 68,75,81, 402 to 33,751 families till date as the first instalment of NLUP assistance. Another Rs 379 crore for 2,066 families are now under process for Animal Husbandry & Veterinary trade in Aizawl.
After the first instalment was distributed, NLUP beneficiaries under land base trade, agriculture, horticulture, soil and water conservation have started receiving the cash assistance.
Meanwhile, as per the NLUP Implementing Board notification the deputy commissioners in every district are now verifying and rechecking the names of NLUP beneficiaries.
In the first five years, the NLUP aims to support 1,20,000 families. The departments of Agriculture, Horticulture, Veterinary, Industries, Forest, Fisheries, Sericulture and Soil and Water Conservation would be involved in the scheme.
About 80 per cent of farmers in Mizoram still depend on jhum cultivation that involves clearing of forests and burning trees, weeds and bamboos.
The NLUP aims to restore ecological balance by providing the farmers alternative sustainable and permanent land-based means of livelihood. It also aims to create 21,480 hectares of bamboo plantation to benefit 10,740 families.
Despite the slash-and-burn system of cultivation, Mizoram has a large forest cover area with 75.77 per cent of the total land.
The NLUP intends to keep 60 per cent of the State�s total geographical area under forest cover and the remaining 40 per cent for land-based development.