Logging at tiger reserve: Wood-based industries in Arunachal district sealed
The forest department lodged an FIR in Miao and requested the police to probe the cases of large-scale illegalities, including encroachment, and book the culprits as per law.
GUWAHATI: The forest department of Changlang in Arunachal Pradesh has sealed all wood-based industries in the district, which shares a border with Myanmar, days after rampant logging by the smugglers was detected at the 1,982 sqkm Namdapha National Park and Tiger Reserve.
The action follows a report by this newspaper on an approximately 20km kutcha road, which the smugglers built in and around Namdapha to ferry logs using trucks after trees were lopped off.It was learnt Arunachal Principal Chief Conservator of Forests N Tam was camping at Miao in the district. He could not be reached over the phone.
In an interim action taken report submitted to the Chief Conservator of Forests, Southern Arunachal Circle, Deomali, on the illegal felling of trees in Namdapha and adjoining Miao Reserve Forest, the DFO of Nampong Forest Division S Mossang wrote that checking and inspection of the entire illegality-affected areas was being carried out since March 15.
“During the course, a large quantity of illegal timber, dumped at scattered locations, has been detected,” Mossang further wrote. He said as a precautionary measure and to facilitate proper checking and investigation of the matter, the operations of all wood-based industries under Namphai Forest Range had been “suspended and sealed” and all relevant records/registers were taken under custody.
A committee has been also constituted to check and investigate the wood-based industries. Official sources said all wood-based industries in the entire district had been sealed. The forest department lodged an FIR in Miao and requested the police to probe the cases of large-scale illegalities, including encroachment, and book the culprits as per law.
Earlier, eight people were arrested. Two others – the alleged kingpins of timber smuggling – are absconding though.A joint team of the forest department and the district administration had on Tuesday detected the road built by the smugglers and the rampant smuggling of timber inside Namdapha.