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Timber smuggling: MLA blames forest officials

Timber smuggling: MLA blames forest officials
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MLA T Rammohan Reddy on Friday expressed doubts whether the forest officials are in cohorts with the timber smugglers

Parigi: MLA T Rammohan Reddy on Friday expressed doubts whether the forest officials are in cohorts with the timber smugglers. On one hand the state government is implementing a massive tree-plantation programme titled Haritha Haram and on the other, the forest officials’ are ‘helping’ the timber smugglers if catching only three timber-laden lorries was any indication when he himself tipped off about smuggling of timber by four lorries. It was high-time the forest officials’ tightened security at night time to prevent timber smuggling.

The MLA breathed fire on the forest officials on the style of functioning and sought to know whether he should step into their shoes?

There is about 7950 hectares of forest land in Kulakacharla, Puduru, Doma and Parigi mandals. The forest has been divided into eight beats and three sections. The smugglers are not only felling the trees in the forest but also the ones in the farmers’ lands. During day time the trees will be felled with the help of some coolies and during night time the timber gets transported on the sly.

The officials book case apprehending a lorry here and another there as a mere eye-wash, while at least 10-15 lorries smuggle timber via Parigi. The smuggling of timber is going on in spite of promulgation of the WALTA legislation.

BY Mohammad Wajeed

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