The National Green Highways Mission (NGHM), responsible for planning, implementing and monitoring the plantation of trees, will set up a Centre for Innovations in Green Pathways in order to enhance research and innovations in this field by involving various international organizations, research institutes and World Bank, The Energy and Resources Institute (Teri) and Yes Bank among others.
For this purpose, three memoranda of understanding (MoUs) were signed between the NGHM and three organizations—ITC Ltd, Yes Bank Ltd and TERI.
The government had launched NGHM last year as part of its green highways policy for plantation, transplantation, beautification and maintenance along the national highways.
In July, this year, the Union road transport and highways minister Nitin Gadkari kick-starting the initial plantation drive along 1,500km of national highways at a cost of about Rs.300 crore. The mission aims to provide a green canopy along 100,000km of highways and create jobs for 1 million youth.
The government plans to spend an estimated Rs.5,000 crore, which is 1% of the road construction cost of Rs 5 trillion till 2019, on the mission and link it with the National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (NREGA) to boost the rural economy.