IMPHAL: Following reports about rampant felling of trees and Forest fires inside the reserved forest areas of Angoulok, Sagollok and Awaching hill in Nongmaiching Reserved Forest, Keirao AC MLA Lourembam Rameshwor along with the local clubs of keirao bitra has inspected the area.
During the inspection visit, the MLA, found several Pine and Uyung trees being felled by the poachers and destruction of the reserved forest areas by wildfires.
Taking serious concern on such destruction of forest areas, the MLA called upon the people to actively participate in protection of forest.
Forest is life of the living beings. Living beings can no longer survive on the Earth when the Forest areas are completely destroyed by the human being without much through. The World is experiencing a global climate change. Protection of Forest is the only option left to prevent climate change, the MLA said.
Reiterating that Government alone should not be left alone to protect Forest, he appealed to the people to protect the shrinking forest areas.
Some days back, local media reported about rampant felling of trees and looting forest resources from the reserved areas of Keirao bitra Awaching, Angoulok, Shagollok hill which are located under the nose of Irilbung Forest Beat office. It was also reported that the forest reserved areas are on the verge of complete destruction with the concerned authority failing to react to the situation on time.
Earlier less numbers of poachers intruded the reserved areas to loot the forest resources and fell trees. However, the reserved forest areas have seen a sudden surge of the incidences of felling trees, forest wildfires after the Government imposed lockdown and Curfew in view of COVID-19 outbreak, confining many at Homes and leaving them jobless. With no option to earn, several jobless villagers has trespassed the reserved forest area to collect firewood. The reserved forest area situated atop the Irilbung Water supply and Keirao MAASI complex looked denuded completely after the Uyung trees, once planted there some 10-15 years back, were illegally felled and looted by the poachers. A recent forest fire has destroyed the area completely. This reserved forest area is situated just a stone’s throw from the Irilbung Forest office. As such, destruction of the said forest area reflects the negligence on the part of the Forest officials deployed here.
Following the media report, MLA Lourembam Rameshwor along with local club volunteers inspected the reserved forest.
Meanwhile, Forest guards of Irilbung Forest Beat office and the Joint Forest Management Committee, Keirao Bitra have strengthened patrolling in and around the Nongmaiching Reserved Forest area and can controlled poachers from trespassing and felling trees from the Forest areas to a great extent, said a member of JFMC, keirao Bitra.
Stating that massive felling of Pine trees to collect “Uchan Meira/Machi” by some poachers from neighbouring tribal villages like Uran Chiru and Tourenphai Maring village have led to destruction of the RF area, he appealed to the concerned to stop such illegal activities. During the patrolling, some poachers could be caught by the JFMC and Forest guards but subsequently released after giving warning. Anybody involved in felling trees inside the RF area will be prosecuted under the Indian Forest Act, 1927, warned the JFMC member.