The Kerala Forest Protective Staff Association (KFPSA) has demanded a probe by the Central Bureau of Investigation into the arson and rioting in the rural areas on November 15.

The association alleged that the attack on the offices and vehicles of forest departments at Kottiyoor, Thamarassery, and Wayanad were carried out by the forest mafia, quarry, and sand lobbies with the support of certain political and religious outfits.

The protesters attacked the office, vehicles, and quarters of the Forest department, which had no role whatsoever in the implementation of the report. Important files pertaining to cases of encroachment on forest land were gutted in the fire when miscreants set ablaze the forest office, the association president M.V. Baby and general secretary N. Sreekumar, said.

The association also urged the State government to take steps to improve the security of the forest personnel. Cases of attack on forest staff or preventing them from performing their duty should be charged with Section 353 (assault or criminal force to deter public servants from discharge of duty) of the Indian Penal Code.

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