Naveen asks Centre to release CAMPA fund to save elephants

Bhubaneswar: Concerned over the frequent death of elephants due to electrocution, Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Tuesday asked the Centre to release funds from CAMPA fund for strengthening transmission lines.
"Funding support from CAMPA (Compensatory Afforestation Fund Management and Planning Authority) for strengthening of transmission lines will go a long way in preventing such avoidable loss of precious wildlife," Patnaik wrote to Union Environment and Forest minister Jayanti Natarajan, officials said here.
Referring to his earlier discussion with Natarajan on October 30, Patnaik recalled about the Union minister's nod for release of funds for strengthening transmission lines if the work was being undertaken by the Energy department of the state and not through the private distribution companies.
The state government has meanwhile submitted its annual plan of operation (APO) under the ad hoc CAMPA for the year 2012-13 seeking an amount of Rs 32 crore for strengthening of transmission lines.
It is proposed to undertake work through the Energy department and not through private distribution companies, Patnaik pointed out in the letter.
"However, the proposal has not been approved by the Ministry of Environment and Forest, stating that the task of appropriate safety measures is the responsibility of the electricity distribution companies and the financial burden of this responsibility cannot be transferred to the Forest department or the CAMPA," Patnaik said.
Patnaik sought Natarajan's intervention for early release of funds in the interest of the protection of wildlife in the state.