Times of India NagpurFire incidents dip in the Melghat Tiger Reserve
Every year, the flora and fauna of the reserve gets damaged because of summer fires. In 2007, around 15,159 hectares (7.5%) was destroyed. This year, the figure has come down to 6485.5 hectares (3.2%).
Generally, the high temperature in summer leads to forest fires but human interference too plays a part. Taking note of the alarming rise in fire incidents, the PCCF of Nagpur had in 2005 constituted a committee to curb the menace. The committee had given certain suggestions which were implemented.
Since the last two years, director of the Melghat Tiger Project, AK Mishra too has been working hard. Fire control squads comprising labourers and regional employees were formed. The department also provided equipment to fight the fires.
When the officials learnt that tribals were setting parts of the jungle afire to extract gum from trees, the department imposed a ban on the practice in the Ambarawa sanctuary. The department also came down on employees remaining absent during the fire season.
Talking to ToI, Mishra said that incidents of fire in Melghat was a matter of concern as animals and plants were getting destroyed.