Madhya Pradesh leads in forest cover area: MoEF

Thane: Madhya Pradesh has maximum area covered under forest among all other states in the country, an RTI query has revealed.

According to the latest India State of Forest Report 2011, a total of 77,700 kms (11.24 percent) of the total 6,90,899 kms of forest land is in Madhya Pradesh, Ministry of Environment & Forest has said, in reply to RTI query by ex-national council member of BJP Omprakash Sharma.

As per the latest assessment report, 83,471 kms (12.05 pc) in the country was covered under very dense forest while 3,20,736 kms (46.32 pc) of land was under moderately dense forest and 2,87,820 kms ( 41.56 pc) was covered by open forest, the MoEF report said.

The report further indicated that Arunachal Pradesh with 67,410 kms stood next to MP, while Chhattisgarh stood at third position with coverage 55,870 kms.

Of the total 77,700 kms of forest land in Madhya Pradesh, 6,640 kms is covered by very dense forest while 34,986 kms by moderately dense forest and 36,074 kms by open forest.

As regards Maharashtra, of the total 50,650 kms of forest land a major chunk of 21,095 kms was covered by open forest and 20,815 kms under moderately dense forest and just 8,736 kms was by very dense forest, the report said.

Of the total geographical area of 32,87,263 kms covering all the states and union territories, 21.06 percent, that is 6,92,394 kms, was covered by forest, it said.

Forest cover was below 100 kms in union territories – Chandigarh, Dadra and Nagar Haveli, Daman-Diu, Lakshadweep and Puducherry.

In atleast eight states, the forest cover was between 100-10,000 kms, in 14 states it was between 10,000-25,000 kms and in the rest of the states, the forest cover is above 25,000 kms, the report added.