SHILLONG, Sept 27: In view of the water bodies being threatened by human activities, the Khasi Hills Autonomous District Council (KHADC) Thursday said that the Councilâ€™s Forest Act would be amended inserting a new provision in section 7 to impose strict prohibition of â€œfelling of tressâ€ along the â€œcatchment areasâ€ within its jurisdiction.
With the implementation of the new provision, all traditional institutions will be directed to take responsibility to ensure there is no further exploitation of the catchment areas and take stern actions against violators even if it is on privately owned lands.
â€œWe would include a new provision in Section 7 of the Act wherein imposing strict prohibition of felling of trees along the catchment areas to preserve the water bodies and prevent them from further deterioration due to human activities,â€ KHADC CEM PN Syiem told reporters after the meeting of the Khasi Hills United Democratic Alliance (KHUDA) held here on Thursday.
He said, â€œWe have decided to amend the Forest Act of the Council in the upcoming Winter Session of the council slated on October next.â€
â€œThere shall be no felling of trees in one kilometers radius from the catchment areas,â€ he said adding â€œThe decision was taken in view of the problem of scarcity of water faced at present by the region.â€
According to him, the traditional institutions including Syiems, headmen of different villages including rural and urban areas falling under the jurisdictions of the KHADC will be asked to follow the Act.
â€œThe involvement of the traditional institutions in ensuring that the Act is put into implementation will play a major role in helping us to preserve and conserve the water bodies in the region,â€ the CEM stated.
He further informed that there will also be stringent actions against violators as the Act applies to all areas even if it is owned by private individuals.
Apprising on the other resolutions taken up during the meeting, the CEM said, â€œWe have decided to introduce the proposed Village Administration Bill in the upcoming winter sessionâ€ adding â€œThe draft bill is already in the final stage.â€
â€œThe Bill has clearly stated that the Headman cannot issue residential certificates without the approval of the Dorbar Shnong which will help in checking influx, illegal migrant in the state,â€ he added.
On the delimitation issue, the CEM said, â€œWe have not been able to come to any resolution on the matterâ€ adding â€œWe have decided to ask for some more views and suggestions from the MDCs before taking a final call on the matter.â€