‘Bamboo plantation can be an alternative to jhum cultivation’

‘Bamboo plantation can be an alternative to jhum cultivation’

Manipur Forest and Environment Minister, Thounaojam Shyamkumar inspecting wares at the state level workshop on bamboo product development on June 14. (NNN Photo)

Newmai News Network

Imphal | June 14

Manipur Forest and Environment Minister, Thounaojam Shyamkumar today said that bamboo plantation can be an alternative to jhum cultivation in the State and it can result in socio-economic upliftment of the bamboo growers/farmers and artisans.

He was addressing the gathering as the chief guest at the State level workshop on the theme ‘Bamboo Resource and Product Development’ held at the City Convention Centre, Imphal organised by National Bamboo Mission, Manipur under the aegis of the Forest Department.

The minister said that bamboo products including bamboo shoot is one the most popular delicacies in the State. “As bamboo is also used in making other infrastructure, high quality bamboo plantation will improve the financial condition of the farmers and artisans,” he added.

Shyamkumar then lauded the Forest officials for presenting bamboo saplings instead of bouquet in the function and opined that if different types of saplings are presented to the dignitaries at functions then definitely people will inculcate the habit of planting which will help in environment conservation.

He also advised the participants to make note of the key points from resource persons/experts and practically implement for the success of the workshop as well as the mission. He further advised the Forest officials to review regarding the trees/plants which were planted in previous years for successful implementation of achieving the goal by the department.

Suhel Akhtar, Additional Chief Secretary observed that although bamboo resource is abundantly available in the State, the quality of bamboo is not commercially viable. Therefore, to gain the benefits, he said, it is important to grow high quality varieties of bamboo. He informed that the National Bamboo Mission, Manipur is working to get quality planting material and special units to process it and ultimately showcase the final products in the country and in foreign countries like Myanmar.  He also said that to make the products commercially viable one can add value addition to the products which is of high quality, focusing on durability, longevity and maintaining quality standards. “If the production of good quality bamboos are produced here and sold then the State and bamboo growers/artisans will benefit”, he added.

Dr. DD Haokip, Additional PCCF (NBM & MP), State Mission Director, National Bamboo Mission, said that Manipur is one of the most important bamboo growing states in India with bearing area of 10,687 sq km. The State has immense potential for bamboo resource and product development, he also said. “For activities for bamboo product development activities like treatment, value addition and waste management of bamboo are important”, he added.

He then said that National Bamboo Mission, Manipur has started establishment of one high tech nursery in Imphal, 10 big nurseries and 5 small nurseries in all the districts of the State to produce quality product material. For product development National Bamboo Mission, Manipur and Forest Department have started work for establishment of primary processing unit in Sawombung (Imphal East), Noney, Churachandpur and Tengnoupal districts which are the maximum bamboo growing districts of the State to facilitate supply of raw materials and benefit bamboo growers and artisans. Stating that National Bamboo Mission, Manipur has proposed 4 treatment plants and 4 bamboo waste units this year to facilitate these processing units, he said that the bamboo growing districts can benefit from the processing units and common facility centers where growers can sell raw materials and artisans can profit from skill development and training programmes.