New Delhi: Minister for environment, forest and climate change, Prakash Javadekar Wednesday decided to form a three-member expert team to help the Odisha government to control the unprecedented fire incidents in the State.

The team which will be moving to Odisha soon will tender expert technical advice and handholding towards early and effective dousing of the forest fires. This was informed by Shri. Javadekar in a tweet message earlier today.

“Today the union minister Dharmendra Pradhan and other MP’s from Odisha met me regarding Forest Fire in Similipal National Park and nearby areas . The ministry is sending a committee of experts to Odisha to give technical advise and help out state forest deptartment in effective management of forest fire incidents in the region, ” tweeted— Prakash Javadekar

Acting on the directions of the union environment minister, the ministry of environment, forest and climate change (MoEF&CC) has constituted a team consisting of:

i. Dr. Amit Mallick, IGF, National Tiger Conservation Authority, New Delhi

ii. Subratt Mahapatra, DDG, MoEF&CC Regional Office, Bhubaneswar

iii. Arti Chaudhary, Head, Silviculture –ICFRE (as fire expert)

The initial Terms of Reference for the team would be:

i. Assessment of the status of fire incidents in Odisha, Similipal Tiger Reserve / Biosphere Reserve in particular.

ii. Expert and technical advice to the State for containment in control of fire in forest area.

iii. Status of loss of forest and wildlife and its relationship with poaching, if any.

The team would be working till the State attains a normal situation with respect to fire incidents. Further, the Environment Minister informed that along with the team at MoEFCC he will himself be monitoring everyday map showing the forest fire detections in the entire State of Odisha and also a separate map showing fire detection in Similipal Tiger Reserve / Biosphere Reserve.