Shimla, Jan 14 (PTI) Himachal Pradesh Forest Minister Gobind Thakur today warned that stringent action would be taken against illicit felling of trees as he asserted the state government's commitment to eradicate forest, drug, liquor and mining mafia.
The minister, who visited the Koti forest range near Shimla, where 400 trees were illegally felled and assured stringent action against the culprits.
Thakur, accompanied top officers of forest department, interacted with locals who said that illicit felling of trees was going on for the past three years.
He directed forest department officers to submit a report about illegal felling of trees within a week.
Following a complaint by Range Forest officer Anu Thakur that about 400 trees of different species like Baan, Deodar and Chir (Pine trees) had been illegally felled in Koti Forest Range, a case was registered under various sections of the Indian Forest Act and 379 of the Indian Penal Code at Dhalli Police Station.
On investigations it was found that illicit felling of trees had taken place on government and private land at Bhalwog Beat at Koti Range and approximately 400 trees of different species, were lying on the spot.
The police recovered about 300 trunks of felled tree and also recovered timber from the spot and 33 bags of coal from the accused who was named in the FIR.
The Principal Chief Conservator of Forests (PCCF) has also ordered an enquiry into the matter but no arrest has been made so far, officials said.
Investigations are in progress and the culprits would be arrested soon, the minister said. PTI PCL ADS .
This is unedited, unformatted feed from the Press Trust of India wire.