People allege nexus between forest officials, smugglers; probe ordered
Srinagar, May 4: A special team of Forest Department on Saturday seized a Bandsaw machine and 100 ft of illegal timber at Sheikh Mohalla area of Badibera in Lolab of north Kashmir’s Kupwara district.
Sources told GNS that the forest team on the directions of concerned DFO carried out the raid at Sheikh Mohalla in Badibera and found the Bandsaw lumbering it. The team seized 100-cft comprising 188 planks of illicit timber.
“How it is possible to establish the bandsaw machine that too without the knowledge of the sleuths of the forest department posted in the area,” locals said, adding that there is nexus between the concerned forest employees and the smugglers besides the bandsaw machine owner.
The locals alleged said that the employees posted in the area are hand in glove with timber smugglers and are responsible for the wanton loot of the green gold as they are giving safe passage for carrying the illicit timber.
When Contacted DFO Abid Nazir told GNS that acting on a specific information, the forest team carried out the raid and seized the bandsaw machine and the 100 cft of illegal timber.
Asked about the alleged nexus between the employees of the forest department and the smugglers, the officer said that he has ordered an inquiry in this regard. “if any official was found involved, action warranted under the law will be taken against them.”
Separately, he said, a case has been registered in police station concerned and further investigations taken up.