Poonch, May 28
In a significant operation, officials of the Forest Department of Poonch Forest Division foiled a major attempt of illegal construction of a road through forest in Dhrati area (Compartment 222/H) of Jhullas Block of Haveli Range. Two arrests have been made in this regard and 11 other persons have been booked under relevant sections of Forest Act and Forest Conservation Act (FCA). One JCB has also been seized. On getting specific information that some unscrupulous elements have started construction of a road in middle of the night on 27th in Dhrati area, a team of forest officials led by Azmat Hussain Shah, Range Officer Haveli, rushed to the spot and arrested two persons namely Mohd. Ikhlaq (owner of JCB) and Mohd. Razzak (Member Panchayat) who were involved in the construction of the road. The JCB machine engaged for the construction was also seized.
However, 11 other persons involved in the offence managed to flee under the cover of darkness. Before the Forest team could reach the spot the miscreants managed to construct approx. 100 mtr road on forest land and also damaged six green Oak trees in the process.
The operation was carried out under the supervision of Dr. Syed Nadeem Hussain, Divisional Forest Officer Poonch and Sameer Bharti Gupta, Conservator of Forests, West Circle.
When contacted, officials informed that due to the swift action of the department a major damage to the forests was averted as these men were stopped just short of entering thick forest.
A case against the two arrested persons and 11 others has already been booked vide FIR number 34/2016-17 under Sec. 2 of Jammu &K ashmir Forest Conservation Act and Sec. 6 of J&K Forest Act.
The arrested persons have been produced before the Magistrate for seeking police remand, the officials told.