The Vice President of India, Shri M. Venkaiah Naidu has called upon Forest Officers across the country to equip themselves with the knowledge and skills to deal with challenges thrown up by climate change and loss of biodiversity. He said the traditional role of foresters was changing radically and they are now entrusted not only with the sustainable management of forests but also educate people, who were dependent on forests.
Interacting with the Officer Trainees of the 2018 Batch of Indian Forest Service at Upa Rashtrapati Bhawan, here today, the Vice President said that India must become a world leader in addressing climate change and biodiversity loss and create a model for other nations to follow.
Shri Naidu stressed the need to educate and encourage people on forest conservation and protection. "There is very little scope to expand forest cover given the growing population, it is time that we conserve, preserve and protect them," he added.
Describing the Forest officers as the custodians of forests, Shri Naidu said that it was their mandate to implement the National Forest Policy and ensure the ecological stability of the country through the protection and participatory, sustainable management of natural resources.
Urging foresters to play a vital role in striking a fine balance between development and environmental conservation, he said: "This balance is necessary for the inclusive and sustainable development of a fast-growing nation like India."
Pointing out that a number of species of flora and fauna were now facing the threat of extinction due to habitat loss and fragmentation and reckless exploitation, the Vice President cautioned that loss of biodiversity might trigger large and unpredictable changes in the ecosystem that could adversely impact all life on earth.
The Director, IGNFA, Shri Omkar Singh, the Director-General of Forests, Shri Siddhanta Das and other dignitaries are also seen.
(With Inputs from PIB)