Inter-state smuggling bid foiled
BHADARWAH, July 11: Forest Department has foiled inter-state smuggling of endangered herb with the seizure of 650 kilograms of banned forest produce (Zakhm-e-Hayat) and registration of case against identified smugglers hailing from State border villages Thanhala and Sharekhi.
As per sources, on specific information developed by Block Officer Hafiz Dar, the sleuths of territorial Forest Department under the supervision of DFO Bhadarwah Chander Shekhar and Range Officer Shafqat Malik started a search operation along inter-state border on Bhadarwah-Chamba road.
During search, the sleuths seized 650 kilograms of banned forest produce (Zakhm-e-Hayat) worth Rs 5.50 lakh, sources said, adding that the endangered herb was being illegally transported to the Chamba town of HP and was dumped in the thick bushes.
“We have been getting information regarding smuggling of banned herbs to the neighbouring States. Last night after receiving information about the consignment being smuggled to Chamba through inter-state road, we seized 650 kilograms of banned forest produce packed in 24 gunny bags hidden in the bushes”, said DFO Bhadarwah Chander Shekhar.
“We have received the video footage of smugglers while extracting the banned herb from the forest and have also identified them, who hail from the State border villages Thanhala and Sharekhi. We have prepared a case under relevant sections and they are being booked for violation of Section 6 of Jammu Kashmir Forest Act 1987”, DFO said, adding that they are also recommending the habitual offenders to be booked under Public Safety Act (PSA). The seized herbs have been brought to the office of Bhaderwah Forest Division, DFO informed.