Forest Minister Thakur Singh Bharmouri revealed that more than 1,800 sq km of forest area in Himachal is under a canopy of weed and lantana, a flowering exotic shrub. These shrubs are affecting the biodiversity of the state.

In his reply at Assembly Minister said that 1,852.85 sq km forests are under cover of weeds. His calculation was based on a survey conducted by the forest department.

The minister added that lantana alone covered 1,562.85 sq km of the total affected area. Bharmouri said department working hard to remove lantana from the forest and from 2009 to 2013 lantana was removed from 6,305 hectares of forest land in the state and in 2013-14, the government aims to clear lantana from 5,000 hectares.