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Shyamkumar seizes massive illegal timbers worth crores in Kamjong

  Shyamkumar seizes massive illegal timbers worth crores

Shyamkumar seizes massive illegal timbers worth crores

Source: Imphal Free Press.

IMPHAL | Mar 24 : Environment and forest team led by minister, Th. Shyamkumar Singh, on Friday seized illegal round timbers worth crores of rupees from Sorathen village in Kamjong district. The timbers were illegally smuggled into Manipur from Myanmar and were deposited in Sorathen village about 100 km away from Imphal. Most of the timbers are Khangra and Yangou and estimated to be worth cores of rupees. Sorathen apparently serves as a transit point from where the timber is loaded to be shifted to their respective destinations. It is learnt that there are different routes from the village connecting border villages of Myanmar and also Tengnoupal district. A check post of 17 Assam Rifles was also situated about 8 kilometers before reaching the village. Altogether 17 vehicles 16 trucks and a pick-up truck were found stationed at the transit point of which some of the trucks were already loaded with the illegal timber ready to move out. According to one of the transporters, (a non local) the timbers were to be transported to Ukhrul however, to whom the timber belong remains a mystery. The transporter told this reporter that he was assigned by his vehicle owners to transport the timbers to Ukhrul and has no knowledge of the details of the people involved in the contract. A few kilometers before reaching Sorathen the minister also came across a saw mill operating without any valid permits.
Speaking to the media persons on the sideline of the surprise raid, Shyamkumar said his department received information about shipment of illegal timbers in the district. With Manipur bordering Myanmar, the state will also bear the brunt of the massive felling of trees in the country (Myanmar), he said. “We will not remain silent as it is a matter saving the environment and the climate. If need arises we will apprise the PM and forest ministry talk to Myanmar to check illegal felling of trees in massive scale”, he said. He informed that the seized timber will be auctioned following legal procedure by the department so that royalty is collected for the State Government. Shyamkumar also said that the forest department is committed for the welfare of the people and the state and appealed to the timber traders to procure logs after receiving clearance from the Joint Forest Management Committee (JFMC). The minister was also accompanied by Phungyar MLA, K. Leishiyo, Somi Awungshi social worker, official of forest department of the concerned district.