Herbal , Medicinal plants from Kamraj forests to be sold through registered NTFP depot holders, DFO Kamraj Forest Division


Kupwara: The Non-Timber Forest Produce (NTFP) Policy launched by the Government of UT in December, 2022 has started yielding benefits to a large number of households residing in and around the Forests.

The collection and sale of NTFPs have now been entrusted to local people, who are at liberty to sell the collected produce to registered depot holders, who offer them better rates instead of selling to a particular contractor on monopolistic pattern. A small amount of royalty also goes to the Biodiversity Management Committees, who utilize these funds for development of forests and Biodiversity Conservation at Gram Panchayat level.

The pristine forests of Kamraj Forest Division are enriched with abundant products other than timber. They are a repository of biodiversity including Non-Timber Forest Produce (NTFP) and other medicinal plant diversity. The medicinal plants sourced from the forests support livelihood of rural households and population living in the ambit of forests who are traditionally engaged in collection of these resources from the forests. Local communities are important stakeholders in conservation of NTFP and engaging them in sustainable collection and utilisation of NTFP is one of the strategies as underlined in the Policy for Sustainable Collection and Utilisation of NTFP of J&K (2022).

Divisional Forest Officer Kamraj Forest Division Kupwara, Anurag Arya, IFS told that”
In a bid to facilitate the judicious extraction of such non-timber products and to leverage such resources for the benefit of the community, Kamraj Forest Division has registered a number of NTFP Sale depots in different Forest Ranges viz. Kandi, Kupwara, South Lolab, North Lolab and Matchil. These sale depots are to serve as the point of sale of any NTFP collected from the forests. The details of such registered holders are
1.M/s Mohammad Sultan Lone & Sons Matchil, 2.M/s Parvaiz Ahmad Khan Dry Fruit Mandi, Kupwara, 3. M/s Aijaz Ahmad Khan Mir Mohalla, Kupwara, 4. M/s Sheikh Dry Fruit Khodi, Surigam, 5. M/s Khan Non-timber Diver, Anderbugh, 6. Universal Non-timber Goose, Kupwara and
7.M/s Aaqib Bashir Bomai, Sopore

Arya further added that the people of Kupwara and Baramulla in general and traditional collectors of NTFP in particular (Falling within the Jurisdiction of Kamraj Forest Division, Zangli) are advised to sell their NTFP (whatsoever collected) through these registered depots.