Rautahat, August 7
Newly transferred District Forest Officer Ram Babu Sah, who assumed responsibilities only two days ago, has taken special initiatives to control deforestation by deploying teams led by Assistant Forest Officers in sensitive areas of Rautahat.
Sah was transferred to the district after the former DFO and five other staffers were recalled by the Ministry of Forest for their involvement in rampant deforestation in Dhansar area of the district two weeks ago.
Sah has already deployed four teams led by assistant DFOs at four far-flung and sensitive areas to curb deforestation. He has warned the officials that he will take action against them if they fail to curb deforestation in those areas.
DFO Sah said that the teams were deployed at Dhansar, Chocha, Baleri, and Ban Bahuari range posts with necessary security and transportation. “If deforestation continues due to negligence on the part of officials, they will be held responsible for it and departmental action will be taken against them,” said Sah.
He said that the reason behind the sharp increase in deforestation in the past was that the officials remained at the DFO and didn’t stay at the range post. “We will make sure this mistake doesn’t happen again. Should any official be found neglecting his duties, he will be reprimanded,” said Sah.
Two weeks ago, more than 25 sal trees were damaged and 20 trees chopped in a day in Dhansar area.
Following the incident, an investigation team from the Ministry of Forest, Department of Forest, CIAA Regional Office Hetauda and District Administration Office, Rautahat, had taken stock of the situation on the field.
Then DFO Shree Bhagawan Gupta, Assistant DFO Ram Kebal and four others were recalled to the ministry a week ago.
A version of this article appears in print on August 08, 2016 of The Himalayan Times.