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news details
Officials allegedly in league with smugglers
3 suspended for damaging forests in Anantnag
5/9/2019 11:22:19 PM
Early Times Report

Anantnag, May 9: Three Forest department employees were placed under suspension in Lider division of Anantnag district for causing ' damage' to the forests in league with smugglers.
The trio has been attached with FCR Pahalgam by the Divisional Forest Officer Lidder, and a physical audit of the damages has been ordered to ascertain the intensity and the cause of the timber loot in the area.
The suspended employees, identified as Mohammad Yousuf Wagay, Abdul Rehman Padder and Mushtaq Ahmad Sheikh have been allegedly involved in the damages caused by the smugglers in their respective areas in the division, prompting Divisional Forest Officer (DFO) of the Lidder Division Dr. Mehraj-ud- Din to take stern action and initiate an enquiry. The Deputy Director Forest Protection Force K-11 Lidder vide his No. 60-63/ seizure/FPF/19-20/K-11/C-03 dated 06-05-19 and Range Officer Mattan vide his No. 05-06/D dated 05-05-2019 had reported to the DFO Lidder that they had seized a TATA Mobile along with illicit kail timber during the intervening night of 04-05-2019. The smugglers in the van were also arrested on spot by the forest officials. According to sources, the timber was extracted and smuggled from compartment number 2/L, Mattan Range .
Sources revealed that the concerned officers had written to DFO that the concerned B.O and Watch and ward staff had not taken any cognizance of the damages and illicit felling of trees which has caused a huge damage to the compartment.
They also revealed that during the investigation, it was established that the damage was caused due to negligence of the concerned watch and ward staff.
However, the Range Officer Mattan according to sources also reported to the DFO that it was not only the negligence of the watch and ward staff but the concerned staff was directly involved the damages in the compartment.
The Divisional Forest Officer Lidder Dr. Mehraj confirmed that three watch and ward staff members of the said compartment have been placed under suspension with immediate effect. He added that a committee of officers has also been constituted to assess the damages caused in the entire compartment.
"I have constituted a committee of three officers who would be combing the whole compartment to assess the actual quantum of damages. They have been asked to submit the report within three days," DFO told a news gathering agency, adding that no one would be allowed to cause any kind of damages to the forests and said stern action would be taken against the involved.
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