Interacting with Indian Forest Service probationers at Indira Gandhi National Forest Academy (IGNFA) here, he said that in hilly terrains traditionally villages were settled on hill tops, but in the recent past a tendency has developed to construct houses on river beds which cause a great loss to life and property at the time of cloudbursts.
"The large magnitude of Kedarnath calamity last year was a result of indiscriminate construction on the glacial bed," he said.
He said a defence soldier takes care of the external security whereas a forest officer is responsible for security of environment and importance of both cannot be undermined.
76 probationers, including 28 women, participated in the interaction.
Earlier, the Vice President visited the Indian Military Academy (IMA) and interacted with Gentlemen Cadets.
He was accompanied by the Commandant of the Academy Lt General Manvender Singh.
Ansari asked them to keep their team spirit and the bonds inculcated in the academy intact in all spheres where they are deployed.

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