RAIPUR: A forest range officer was suspended and two other officials were transferred after a 35-year-old farmer committed suicide allegedly due to delay in getting compensation for his crop which was destroyed by elephants last year in Chhattisgarh's Korba district.
The farmer, identified as Jageshwar Singh Kunwar, had killed himself at Bundeli village on Thursday night reportedly over the delay in getting compensation of Rs 3500.
"Taking strict cognisance of the matter chief minister Raman Singh has directed Forest Department to suspend Korba Forest Range Officer C R Netam with immediate affect," an official statement said here today.
The directive has also been issued to attach the services of Divisional Forest Officer J R Nayak and Sub-Divisional Officer (Forests-North) R K Dubey to the office of Principal Chief Conservator of Forests, Raipur, it said.
The orders in this regard were issued late last evening.
During preliminary investigation by Korba Collector, Netam was found responsible for the inordinate delay in resolving compensation cases.
According to Kunwar's kin, his crop on nine acres of land at Bundeli village was destroyed by wild elephants in November last year and since then he was awaiting the aid.
Kunwar was under pressure as he had borrowed loan from bank for farming and running his family, his kin said.
As per a forest official, an amount of Rs 3500 was to be paid as compensation to the farmer against his crop loss while compensation of another Rs 3500 was pending in the name of his father.
Presently, there are as many as 63 farmers who are yet to receive compensation against crop damage due to elephant menace in Korba division, the official said.
Meanwhile, CM has also directed Bilaspur Division Commissioner Sonmoni Borah to minutely investigate the entire episode, the statement said.
"Negligence on the part of any official in sensitive cases connected to farmers will not be tolerated at any cost. In case any negligence is found on the part of Korba Collector, necessary action will be taken against him," the release quoted CM as saying.
Singh also asked officials to take sensitive, serious and immediate action to dispose of the pending issues of farmers.