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Illegal hill cutting on ADBU campus, vehicles seized

By Correspondent

JORABAT, Dec 8 - The practice of illegal hill cutting activity has been going on without any fear of law in Dimoria area, on the outskirts of the city, despite several reports highlighting the nexus of unscrupulous elements. According to reports, a massive excavation work on around 20 bighas of land in and around Assam Don Bosco University (ADBU) at Sonapur, situated along the Amchang Wildlife Sanctuary, has been on for a long time in the eco-sensitive zone without any permission from the department concerned. The said spot is also said to be an elephant corridor.

On getting information, the Principal Chief Conservator of Forests (PCCF) of Wildlife, Amit Sahai, along with Guwahati Wildlife District Forest Officer (DFO), Jayanta Deka, raided the university campus on Sunday and found several excavators and dumpers involved in the hill-cutting activity. However, the university authorities reportedly failed to produce any legal document authorising extraction and mining of earth on the university campus. Following which, five dumpers and six excavators were seized from the spot.

It may be mentioned here that the then in-charge of Jorabat Forest Camp, Jintu M Talukdar, after receiving complaints from various sources, had visited the spot and found fresh excavation, following which a report was forwarded to the DFO-Guwahati range in September for further action. The report also mentioned the GPS coordinates of the spot, requesting the department to clear the jurisdiction of it, as the spot was doubted to be either of Territorial Forest (Guwahati Forest range) or the Wildlife Forest.

However, in-charge Talukdar got transferred in October first week and the process got delayed again.

Interestingly, pressure groups, including the All Assam Students� Union (AASU), have kept raising the issue during the last few months, but it was not taken up by the higher officials from the forest department.

Talking to The Assam Tribune, Dibyojyoti Medhi, central executive member of the AASU, raised suspicion as how the people/entities having financial and political stronghold get away without the axe of law after destroying Mother Nature.

Medhi, including other conscious section, also demanded a high-level inquiry of the entire activity and urged the Forest Minister to take strong action against the forest officials involved in it. He further informed that the department has still not registered any FIR regarding such a massive illegal hill cutting activity.

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