Chamarajanagar: A forest officer has been accused of axing four trees commonly used to make furniture, in the Kothanoor forest range of the Cauvery Wildlife Sanctuary. Assistant Conservator of Forests of Hanur sub-division, Ankaraju allegedly ordered the forest staff of Kothanoor range to bring down the four trees on the banks of the River Cauvery behind the Anti-Poaching Camp on August 11. The incident was brought to the notice of Deputy Conservator of Forests, Manjunath of the Cauvery Wildlife Sanctuary on August 23 and action was later taken against ACF Ankaraju, according to sources.
The axed trees are of the Karachi and Kamara varieties, which are used in the Kanakapura region to make furniture. They were allegedly loaded on to Mr Ankaraju’s vehicle, who took them to a farmhouse near Netkal village, say sources. Chief Conservator of Forests Vijay Lal Meena said that a show-cause notice had been slapped on Mr Ankaraju and he was waiting for his response.
The officer has also been slapped another notice by DCF Manjunath.
Sources claim that it was during a visit to the Sundralli Anti-Poaching Camp in July that Mr Ankaraju came across the grown trees used to make furniture. The forest staff are said to have at first resisted his orders to cut them, but later gave in and felled the trees. The axed wooden logs were allegedly taken in a department vehicle to the ACF. While Range Forest Officer of Kothanoor Faranaz has also been served notice for the illegal felling of trees, official sources say he had no role to play in the affair.
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