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BMDA develops 6.75 lakh palm-trees in vast Barind tract

RAJSHAHI, July 17, 2017 (BSS) - The Barind Multipurpose Development Authority (BMDA) has developed more than 6.75 lakh palm-trees creating an eye- catching atmosphere on both sides of the rural roads in the region including its vast Barind tract.

Besides, 26 lakh more saplings were grown under the five-year "Barind Environmental Restoration through Afforestation Project" implemented in different northern districts including Rajshahi, Naogaon and Chapainawabgonj districts.

Engineer Abdur Rashid, Executive Director of BMDA, told BSS that the trees were developed on the roadsides and surroundings of ponds and canals for enhancing production of molasses (gur) with an ultimate goal of reducing the import pressure on sugar.

Main thrusts of the program were to increase forest resources, enhance awareness of farmers about plantation, improve organic matters status of soil and create employment opportunity.

"We have enormous prospect of growing palm, date, palm-oil trees in the region as there are huge fellow land besides the roads and highways and demand of the processed items," he said adding that no need for additional care, nursing and cultivable and precious lands for the cultivation.

Role of Palm tree is very important to reduce the rate of casualty caused by thunderbolt that claims lives of both people and domestic animals every year, he mentioned.

Roadside palm-tree plantation activities on the improved roads are progressing successfully that will ultimately help reduce carbon emission at a substantial level and that is very important to face the adverse impact of climate change in the vast Barind tract.

In this regard, he also said the role of tree is indispensable in protecting ecological balance side by side with benefiting the farmers.

He said the Tk 22.52-crore project was implemented in the northwestern Bangladesh aimed at its socio-economic and ecological development through creating additional forest resources.

Out of the total target of planting 35 lakh tree-saplings of fruit, forest and medicinal trees, around 34.50 lakh have been planted throughout the division and 80 to 90 percent of those were recorded as survival condition.

The farmers have already started getting benefits from the planted trees in terms of fruit and firewood along with seasonal employment.

In addition to planting the saplings, twenty-five nurseries were developed and around 1042 farmers including some officials concerned were imparted training on preservation of quality seed and development of nursery in modern method under the project.

The project has started playing a vital role to various positive fields like enriching soil health and facing the adverse impact of climate change in the Barind region, Engineer Rashid added.