State

State yet to decide on palm oil cultivation

Shillong, Aug 30: The state government is yet to decide on palm oil cultivation, said Forest Minister James Sangma on Monday.

Sangma said though he is “personally opposed to palm oil cultivation in Meghalaya”, the government is yet to discuss this matter.

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The Centre recently launched the National Mission on Edible Oils-Oil Palm with a focus on the North East and the Andaman and Nicobar Islands. A financial outlay of Rs 11,040 crore has been made for the scheme, out of which Rs 8,844 crore is the Centre’s share and Rs 2,196 crore is state share.

Tura MP Agatha Sangma has also expressed her reservations about palm oil cultivation. So far, there has been no clear picture on how the northeastern states would implement the scheme.

According to a 2017 research on palm oil cultivation in India said the northeastern states are under increased threat from “unguided oil palm expansion, due to the lack of robust studies on the feasibility of oil palm plantations and potential threats to the biodiversity and livelihoods of indigenous communities in this region”.

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