HYDERABAD: In a first of its kind incident, the Telangana forest department has intercepted red sanders logs which were being smuggled via the capital city, when a truck carrying the logs met with an accident on the Outer Ring Road in the wee hours of Wednesday.
The incident took place at Hamidullah Nagar near Shamshabad when a truck carrying heavy loads of paper rammed from behind another truck transporting glass. As many as 115 red sanders logs were being transported in the truck with glass.
The truck driver carrying paper was hurt in the accident while the other truck driver carrying sanders and glass had fled the spot, said Shamshabad police. They handedover the case to the Telangana forest department for further probe, after registering a case against the drivers.
M Nagabhushanam, the assistant conservator of forests, Hyderabad division, confirmed seizure of 115 red sanders logs and the truck.
According to him, the truck was on its way to Himachal Pradesh from Chennai, via Hyderabad and Nagpur. The timber has been shifted to Gurramguda forest timber depot. “We believe the logs are of Grade 1 quality which would cost as much as `10 lakh per ton. We believe these 115 logs would weigh upto one ton only,” said Nagabhushanam.
Preliminary investigation has revealed that the truck belonged to a person in Nellore. Officials are in the process of contacting Saint Gobain glass manufacturing company in Chennai in whose consignment the timbers were found. Whereas, officials also suspect the owner of the vehicle could have loaded the sanders logs from Nellore after the truck left from Chennai. “The Saint Gobain invoice says the vehicle was on its way from Chennai to Himachal Pradesh. We suspect the vehicle was on its way to China border as there could be no buyers for sanders in Himachal Pradesh as such,” said the ACF.
A red sanders and sandalwood smuggling case has been registered under undetected case category. A case has been registered against the owner of the vehicle for carrying red sanders without transit permit.