Integrated Natural Resource Management and Poverty Reduction Project in Haryana (JICA Assisted Project)
The Project aiming at rehabilitation of forestlands in an ecologically sustainable manner and improvement in the quality of life of the villagers adjoining forests is being implemented in the state. The project area eventually comprises of 800 villages spread over 17 districts out of 21 districts of Haryana, treating degraded forest area of 48,800 ha including farm forestry at a cost of Rs. 2,860 million.
The major components of the Project are:
1. Soil and Water Conservation
Hilly areas in the state are subject to severe soil erosion and effective soils and water conservation measures are required. Various methods can be employed for this purpose and the Project envisages construction of dry stone check dams, crate-wire structures in streams and choes and water harvesting structures. Rehabilitation of old water harvesting structures is also done under the Project. These works usually begin during the winter months after rainy season. The design of water harvesting structures are finalised in consultation with the Consultant engaged for Soil & Water Conservation. Associations of potential water users in the selected villages are formed. Works done during previous years are being maintained.
2. Plantation Models and Nursery Development
Bulk of the plantation works under this component is complete and these are being maintained and protected from biotic interference. Work on modernization of nurseries was done. Under Farm forestry, quality seedlings are sold to interested farmers and other tree growers to plant these on their farms and other lands. Protection works along strips using concrete fencing posts and barbed wire has been done.
3. Poverty Reduction and Institutional Building
This is the most important component of the Project where institutional building and poverty reduction activities have to be carried out and consolidated in 800 project villages selected during 2004-05, 2005-06, 2006-07 and 2007-08 Village Forest Committees (VFCs) have been constituted and Micro plans were written after conducting participatory rural appraisal exercises. Works on Entry Point Activities (EPAs) have been taken up.
So far about 2064 Self Help Groups (SHGs) have been constituted and their bank accounts opened. They were made aware about the project objectives and their role. They are being encouraged to initiate some feasible Income Generation Activity (IGA) for which loans are available from VFC from the revolving fund created under the Project. Most of these works have been initiated but yet to complete.
4. Technical Assistance
Consultants have been engaged to assist the Forest Department in implementation of institutional building, poverty reduction activities and for providing baseline data for soil conservation works.
5. Supporting Activities
A large number of supporting activities have been provided in the Project. These relate to Publicity & Extension, School plantations & environmental campaign, Human Resources Development (domestic and foreign trainings), development of MIS/GIS, Research & Development, construction and maintenance of buildings and procurement of equipments and vehicles. These are regular on-going activities of the department (except School Plantations & Environmental campaign which is being handled by Organization for Industrial, Spiritual and Culture Advancement (OISCA India).
This component includes salary of the staff, office expenses, operation and maintenance of vehicles/equipment, travel expenditure and other overheads. This component is funded from the State share in the Project outlay.The plantations under this project were done upto the year 2008-09, whereas other supplementary activities are still being carried out. This Project comes to an end in the month of June 2014. So far an amount of Rs 280.76 crores have been spent under this project out of the total amount of Rs. 286.01 crores released.