HYDERABAD: With the National Green Tribunal (NGT) staying the auction of red sanders, scheduled for October 10, Andhra Pradesh government is preparing to file a petition against the tribunal’s order.A Chennai-based individual had moved the tribunal challenging the auction of red sanders. The petitioner claimed that the red sanders, an endangered species, was on the brink of extinction owing to large- scale felling and smuggling.
The state government would file a counter asking the tribunal to vacate the stay. As a part of raising funds, the cash-strapped AP government recently decided to sell in the international market more than 8,500 tonne of red sanders logs seized from smugglers.
Earlier, the AP government planned to hold e-tender-cum-e-auction for six days between October 10 and 17, in 177 e-lots containing 1,77,877 logs.
Red sanders has been included in Appendix-II of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) in 1995 and classified as endangered and placed in the red list of the International Union for Conservation of Nature in 1997. This is the third time since 1995 that India was given permission to export 11,806 tonne of the seized logs. The sale of red sanders became big news after Chandrababu Naidu government announced that it was thinking of using the sale proceeds to fund the crop loan waiver scheme. The government is expecting `2,000 crore from the sale of red sanders.
As many as 140 overseas buyers, including 109 from China, besides 275 Indian visitors so far made physical inspection of the red sanders lots located at various depots of the forest department in the state, according to forest department.