Forest Conservation Act, 1980 reflects the collective will of the nation to protect its rich biodiversity and natural heritage and permits only unavoidable use of forest land for developmental purposes. The Supreme Court’s interpretation that forest land would also include ‘forest’ as understood in the dictionary sense (Supreme Court order dated 12.12.1996 in WP No.202/1995) and hence all proposals for diversion of such areas to any non-forest purpose, irrespective of its ownership, would require the prior approval of the Central Government.
Forestry clearance will be given in two stages. In Ist stage, the proposal shall be agreed to in principle in which usually the conditions relating to transfer, mutation and declaration as RF/PF, of equivalent non-forest land for compensatory afforestation and funds for raising compensatory afforestation thereof are stipulated and after receipt of compliance report from the State Government in respect of the stipulated conditions, formal approval under the Act shall be issued.
STANDARD OPERATING PROCEDURE IN THE FOREST DIVISION:
The Nodal Officer (Forest Conservation) at the office of the Principal Chief Conservator of Forests (PCCF) cum Principal Secretary (Environment and Forests), Government of Arunachal Pradesh, Itanagar receives the diversion proposal from the user agency (Part I) and after scrutiny, forwards the proposal along with maps of the diversion site to the Divisional Forest Officer (DFO), under whose jurisdiction the proposed diversion site falls.
Every proposal upto 40 hectares must be accompanied by a site inspection report from the DFO and proposals involving area above 40 hectare should have a site inspection report of the Conservator of Forests. In respect of proposals involving diversion of forest land above 100 hectares, site inspection shall be carried out by the Regional Offices of the Ministry.
The DFO conducts a detailed field inspection of the proposed diversion site and forwards, recommending or not recommending, the proposal back to the Nodal Officer (Forest Conservation) through the Chief Conservator of Forests (CCF), Western Arunachal Circle, Banderdewa. The DFO also forwards the prepared costs of diversion for the recommended proposal, which includes:
- Net Present Value (NPV),
- Cost of Compensatory Afforestation (CA)
- Royalty of standing trees in the site.
The documents submitted by the office of the DFO along with the forwarded diversion proposal are as follows:
Part II (filled by the DFO)
Site Inspection Report (filled by the DFO)
Enumeration Sheet of trees
List of Flora and Fauna
List of rare and endangered species
Calculation of Net Present Value (NPV)
Compensatory Afforestation (CA) – Detailed estimate
Compensatory Afforestation -Map of CA site
Compensatory Afforestation -Suitability Certificate
Compensatory Afforestation -Species to be planted
Compensatory Afforestation Site in Scanned SoI toposheet of 1:50,000 scale
Net Present Value
Based on the ecological importance of forest falling in different eco-value and canopy density classes, the Net Present Value (NPV) per hectare of forest has been fixed by Hon’ble Supreme Court vide orders dated 28.03.2008 and 9.05.2008 (made applicable with prospective effect) for non-forestry use / diversion of forest land.
CEC (Centrally Empowered Committee) classified the forest taking in view the ecological role and value of the forests and 16 major forest types have been further grouped into 6 ecological classes depending upon their ecological functions.
Eco-Class I – Consisting of Tropical Wet Evergreen Forests, Tropical semi Evergreen Forests and Tropical Moist Deciduous Forests.
Eco-Class II – Consisting of Littoral and Swamp Forests
Eco-Class III – Consisting of tropical dry Deciduous Forests
Eco-Class IV – Consisting of Tropical Thorn Forests and Tropical Dry Evergreen Forests.
Eco-Class V – Consisting of Sub-tropical broad Leaved Hill Forests, Sub-Tropical pine Forests and Sub Tropical Dry Evergreen forests.
Eco-Class VI – Consisting of Montane Wet Temperate Forests, Himalayan Moist Temperate Forests, Himalayan Dry Temperate Forests, Sub Alpine Forest, Moist Alpine Scrub and Dry Alpine Scrub.
NPV (Net Present Value) Rates (in Rs.) per hectare
|Eco-Value class||Very Dense Forest||Dense Forest||Open Forest|
Guidelines related to forest diversion proposals including the formats of Part A of both Form A and B to be submitted by the user agency can be downloaded here.FOREST CONSERVATION