Deforestation refers to the cutting of different tree species on a large scale. Deforestation leads to soil erosion, flash floods, risk of high intensity natural calamities, and decrease in the concentration of oxygen (o2) level in the atmosphere and increase in the co2, which causes increase in temperature during summers. In fact forests play a necessary role in balancing natural phenomena. It includes co2 & o2 this very phenomenon is necessary for the survival of life on this earth and utterly has no alternative for it. I agree that in our system every subject is important and has an eminent influence in our society like economics, education, political science, mathematics, history and all the remaining ones. But one thing is true and has been experienced by the experts that ‘’ when there comes environment related issues, to resolve them/sort out them, we need scientific experts because in this universe, the science field has a colossal influence by several means. In our society there are selfish kind folk, they are damaging, destroying and smuggling the forest assets for their personal means. Actually the fact is that forests are not the trees upright there, forests are the golden assets of the nation. There are intellectual classes in our society as well but they are bound under certain limits.
Forests are the gold like assets for the country and in the state and play an immense role in the environmental balance. Government administration or the concerned forest department should come out from their nests and should initiate the counselling programmes for the general folk, advertisement hoardings should be displayed at the centrally focused place for the awareness and feed backs. For last couple of years, I have visited several forest areas in different districts like Budgam, Gulmarg, Pahalgam, it is very heart wrenching and painful that in past deforestation has taken place at very large quantum and forests looks like deserted and explains the ruthless act done by the selfish people for merely the sake of few countable currency notes.
As we know and are utterly aware that there are documentary movies, poets circulate in their poems, film industry mentioned in the songs, singers sang in their songs every bit in the forest beautifying nature. The ravishing green tipped leaves, cylindrical upright trunk of the pine trees, and mesmerising, whispering, roaring buzzing sound of the dragon fly. In fact forests beautifies our motherland, caters us to exciting movements, and bestows us with exceptional recreational scenes.
In India 7, 12,249 Sq. Km of the total geographical area are under the forests and in Jammu & Kashmir 20,230 sq. km total geographical area under forests. Pir Panjal forest range in Jammu and Kashmir is rich in different kind’s forest trees and plays a pivotal role in terms of the economy of Jammu and Kashmir and provides shelter to several animal species there. Pir Panjal is a group of mountains in the lesser Himalayas region, running from east-southeast to northwest across the Indian territories of Himachal Pradesh and Jammu and Kashmir and then Pakistan’s Azad Kashmir. The average elevation varies from 1400 m to 4100 m.The Himalaya’s show a gradual elevation towards the Dhauladhar and Pir Panjal ranges. Pir Panjal is the largest range of the lesser Himalayas, near the banks of the Sutlej River it dissociates itself from the Himalayas and forms a divide between the Beas and Ravi rivers on one side and the Chenab on the other. The renowned Galyat Mountains are also located in this range. The region is connected to the valley of Kashmir via Mughal road and used to be the historical connection of Kashmir with other states of India. Forests used as recreational activities: since centuries forests have been used for the recreational activities like for the summer camps during the scorching heat of the July-August. Forests are used for trekking purposes, mountaineering purposes, hunting etc. Forests are being used for the research means by researchers as well since long, the students of the higher levels who are pursuing their doctorate degrees from the universities are fond of the forests, as they get, what they don’t get anywhere else that’s too on large quantity (herbs, shrubs, grass, trees, plants and several other varieties they want).
Uses of forests: As already mentioned in this article, the importance of the forests besides it forests helps the balance in the food chains, food webs, provides shelter to the wild animals, birds, acts as the hub of medicinal plants, proving the grazing space to the Tribal nomads and in some places where people who are living nearby the forests also get several benefits without harming them.
What causes the deforestation: deforestation takes place when there is an external involvement that disturbs the forest-curbed areas for the means of smuggling, constructional purposes, urbanization, timber demand for the bridges, buildings, etc. Suggestion; afforestation is the best alternative for the areas where trees have been cut down. But it takes too long to get into its original shape. So we should be aware of the people who try to damage the forest through local bodies and administration should pay attention towards this section frequently and should hold public awareness programmes regularly and deploy sufficient man force during night hours until our society gets vigilant and educated regarding the importance of the forests and its uses.
(The author a resident of Raiyar is pursuing PG Degree In Environmental Science. The views, opinions, facts, assumptions, presumptions and conclusions expressed in this article are author’s own and aren’t necessarily in accord with the views of “Kashmir Horizon”.)