IMPHAL, MARCH 27, 2018 (DIPR): Forest and Environment Minister Shri Thaonoujam Shyamkumar today seized 9 trucks at Sekmai for illegally transporting sand from Dimapur. The truck drivers had not procured Transit Pass (TP) from the Forest Department, although one of the truck drivers was carrying TP issued from the Tadubi Forest Check Post.
Speaking to media persons, Minister Th. Shyamkumar said that the trucks were detained in the morning at Sekmai with the help of OC, Sekmai Police Station and his staff. He said the truck drivers informed him that they were not issued TP by the department officials at the Mao Forest Check Post citing confusion over the new rate of TP. Issuing TP to only one truck, the officials at Tadubi asked them to get the remaining TP from other check post, the drivers told the Minister.
Stating that the officials at Mao should have contacted the other Forest check post in case of confusion, Th. Shyamkumar said if the allegation is true than appropriate action will be taken against department officials for neglecting their duty. He appealed to the department officials to conduct their duty sincerely and added that they should issue TP on forest products to collect royalty following the guidelines of the department. Later, the truck drivers were issued TP from the Sekmai Forest Check Post and released.
Forest Minister said that the Forest department is sincerely working to save environment, apart from collecting royalty on forest products. He said he will once again start checking whether the trees planted during the different plantation drives and Vanamohatsava last year are being nurtured by the concerned officers. Cautioning the concerned officers that they will be held responsible if trees are not nurtured properly, he added that during his inspection so far, he came across that most of the concerned officers were satisfactorily nurturing the trees planted last year.
Visiting the Kanglatongbi Forest Beat Office, he informed the media persons that the department will start plantation drive in the monsoon season in May-June as a part to save the environment and to check global warming. For the purpose, around 20-30 lakh saplings of different plant species are being developed at nurseries at different Forest offices of the State, he added.
He said non-indigenous trees will be gradually replaced by the indigenous trees/plants having nutritional values, including fruit bearing trees, which are suitable to the climatic condition and soil of the State. Stating that the process has already begun, he said the result can be seen in the next 10 years. Forest Minister Th. Shyamkumar further appealed to every section of the society to support in preserving the environment of the State.