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RTI Movement demands Judicial probe in green felling by private company
9/3/2018 10:51:18 PM
Early Times Report

Srinagar, Sept 3: Jammu & Kashmir RTI Movement has demanded a Judicial probe by a sitting High Court Judge into axing and uprooting of thousands of Forest trees by a private Transmission Company which is executing work on Jallandhar - Samba -Amargrah 440 KV DC transmission line.
In a statement issued here , Chairman of RTI Movement Dr Raja Muzaffar Bhat said that forest wealth from Baramulla to Samba via Pir Panchaal forests is being plundered under the garb of development.
"Employees of transmission company Sterlite , NRSS 29 , Forest Department & State Forest Corporation (SFC) need to be questioned as more than 400 forest trees (Kail) have been cut down and uprooted in Laden and Buzgoo villages of Budgam district only under the garb of laying 440 KV transmission line. Out of the 400 trees our sources have revealed that more than 200 trees are missing in Laden and Buzgoo villages only. JCB's are used to uproot the stumps, so as to destroy the evidence. Huge damage has been caused in Pakherpora , Kanidajan , Darwan villages as well plus areas in Shopian and Kellar. We want a high level inquiry to be conducted by a sitting Judge of J&K High Court" said Dr Raja Muzaffar
"In addition to it forest axing of trees, the company has uprooted and axed thousands of fruit trees as well. The employees of power company and officials of Forest , Horticulture and Revenue departments are hand and glove to destroy our green wealth . We appeal Governor to initiate a Judicial Probe into this issue which has caused huge loss to our environment and forests" he added.
Trees have been axed from Baramulla to Rajouri. The transmission line of the NRSS -29 passes through 11 districts of state including Budgam, Shopian, Poonch and Rajouri. In Laden and Buzgoo villages alone more than 400 trees have been axed. Local Forest Officers have not made the actual assessment of damages caused to Forests. The State Forest Corporation (SFC) which as per sources is undertaking the felling of tress has even failed to recover the actual compensation in many Forest blocks . This has not only caused damage to environment but has caused a loot to state exchequer as well. Affected villagers and farmers in many villages allege that majority of the affected farmers are not paid compensation at all. Locals in Budgam allege nepotism in award of compensation. Sources say that at many places the line passes over agricultural / horticulture land but no compensation has been paid as the commercial and agricultural value of land has come down drastically.
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