It is for the first time perhaps that the administration has called a meeting of the representatives of all line departments and brought home to them that they have to be part of the Green Jammu mission. Modern town planning invariably takes care of green belts and parks and plantation of trees in parks, roadsides, blank space patches, footpaths etc. to provide shade and make the urban areas more attractive. Unfortunately, Jammu has remained deprived of real green cover. Not only that, while undertaking new constructions, trees have been felled wantonly. New saplings have not been planted which is blatant contravention of the rules of Urban Forestry Division in Jammu. Even for felling any tree, approval of the Urban Forestry Division is necessary and compensation has to be deposited which is utilized for planting two saplings against one tree that has been cut?
It is good that the Divisional Commissioner has approached all relevant departments to cooperate in the venture. It should be possible to make Jammu really green within next three years if the mission is undertaken in right earnest now meaning this monsoon season. But apart from the departments involved, it may also be useful to get into touch with institutions like J&K Bank, who support such initiatives for making its contribution to the greening of Jammu. A scheme on the pattern of Green Delhi should be floated. Just planting the sapling by the edge of the road or in a park or open space is not enough. Its protection against trespassing animals and humans has also to be taken care of. Then the watering of the plants is also part of the task. The Urban Forestry Division has to gear up and bring the scheme to completion. Foremost of all, it has to identify the sites, roads, parks, open spaces and streets where plantation can be done. It has also to find out if more parks and walking/jogging strips can be made available to the citizens of Jammu.
Jammu needs to be given a green face lift. Otherwise it is a dry and opaque city where crowded and congested traffic makes it dreary. The mission of making Jammu green is a long and rather a permanent mission. Urban Forestry Division has to do hard labour to turn Jammu into a green and shaded city. Hopefully the initiative taken by the Divisional Commissioner will receive adequate response from all involved departments and agencies. People will impatiently watch the launching and undertaking of the mission till it reaches completion.