Steps To Control Wild Fire In Similipal National Park


Will the Minister of ENVIRONMENT, FOREST AND CLIMATE CHANGE be pleased to state:

  1. Whether Government is aware that many a time wild fire erupts in Similipal National Park, Biosphere and in Similipal Tiger Reserve causing major loss to natural resources, flora and fauna, animals, birds and other creatures;
  2. If so, whether the Central Government has taken any major initiatives to control and curb the wild fire incidents which occur frequently almost every year;
  3. Whether the Central Government has formulated any concrete action plan to stop the eruption of the wild fire in order to prevent the major losses; and
  4. If so, the details thereof?

Answered by: Minister for Environment, Forest and Climate Change Shri Bhupender Yadav on 06.04.2023

(a) to (d): Forest fires occur every year during summer due to various natural and anthropogenic reasons. Most forest fires in the country, including in Similipal National Park, are ground fires which mainly affect ground vegetation.

Prevention and control of forest fires is primarily the responsibility of the State Governments. The Ministry supports the efforts of the States by providing financial assistance under the Centrally Sponsored Scheme of Forest Fire Prevention and Management. Funds are provided under the scheme for fire prevention and management measures such as modern tools for extinguishing fires, use of communication and information technology, creation and maintenance of fire lines in forest areas, engagement of fire watchers, creation of water storage structures in forest areas, strengthening of forest infrastructure, procurement of firefighting equipment, soil and moisture conservation works in high risk areas, awareness creation, and incentivizing villages/communities for protection against forest fire.

The Ministry formulated the National Action Plan on Forest Fire (NAPFF) in the year 2018. The plan aims to minimize the incidence of forest fire in the country by informing, enabling and empowering forest fringe communities and incentivizing them to work in tandem with State Forest Departments,reducing the vulnerability of forests across diverse forest ecosystems against fire hazards, enhancing the capabilities of forest personnel and institutions in fighting fires, and speeding up recovery after fire events. The Ministry has also constituted a Central Monitoring Committee which reviews theimplementation of NAPFF and preparedness of States regarding forest fire prevention and management.

The Forest Survey of India, an organization under the Ministry, disseminates satellite based forest fire alerts to State Forest Departments and other registered mobile users whenever forest fires are detected.

Source : Civil Services Chronicle Online, April, 2023