Shimla : A meeting of the cabinet sub-committee on the implementation of Swarnim Himachal Pradesh Drishti Patra-2017 was held here today under the chairmanship of Education Minister Suresh Bhardwaj, in which various topics related to the forest department were discussed. He said that the forest is the natural heritage of Himachal Pradesh, for which the state government is committed to preserve and promote. Different types of herbs are found in the state, which are used by local stakeholders for income generation.Suresh Bhardwaj said that 26,47,146 saplings have been planted in the state this year under the plantation campaign conducted in collaboration with local people and other institutions. Plantation is also being done under the Vidyarthi Van Mitra scheme started by the State Government. Under the Community Forest Promotion Scheme plantation is being done and employment generation is also being ensured by linking forests with employment. Forest Minister and Sub-committee member Govind Singh Thakur said that herbs plantation is also being encouraged under ‘Van Samriddhi, Jan Samridhi Yojana’ in the state. Presently this scheme is being implemented in ten forest divisions of six districts. In order to promote eco-tourism, the Tourism Department has allocated eight crore, five crore and five crore rupees respectively for Chanshal, Janjhali and Beed-Billing, for the purpose of tracking paths, forest rest houses, public facilities and forest check points.He said that the Union Ministry of Environment and Forests has allocated three crore rupees each for Manali and Nachan, which will develop natural parks and pedestrian paths. 22 eco-parks have been developed in the state. Check dams and raw ponds are being constructed under the State Planning and Water Conservation, CAMPA and outside aided projects to prevent the falling groundwater level in the forests.During the meeting, Sub-Committee members and Industries Minister Bikram Singh, Additional Chief Secretary Forest Sanjay Gupta, Principal Secretary Transport K.K. Pant, Principal Chief Conservator of Forest Ajay Kumar, Member Secretary Sub-Committee & Secretary GAD Devesh Kumar and other senior officers were also present in the meeting.