15 masked men attack DFO campus, tie up 3 forest staff

A gang of fifteen men axed two sandalwood trees and decamped with the logs from the campus of the District Forest Office (DFO) here after attacking and tying up three forest employees in the small hours of Wednesday.

A.K. Ulaganathan, Conservator of Forests (in charge) of Dharmapuri Forest Circle, told The Hindu that the masked men entered the office of the Harur Forest Ranger and

started attacking B. Deverajaulu (55), Forest Watcher, A. Chinnathambi (54), Forest Guard, and P. Suresh (45), Junior Assistant. Before attacking, they allegedly took away the mobile phones from the employees.

Five members of the gang stood guard as the rest of them axed the sandalwood trees and took away the logs.

The sandalwood logs weighed around 50 kg, worth Rs. 2 lakh. The two trees were about 30-years-old, Mr. Ulaganathan said.

The injured forest employees were admitted to the Government Taluk Hospital in Harur where Mr. Ulaganathan visited them.

District Forest Officer S. Ramasubramanian, Rangers S. Jagadeesan (Harur) and N. Arumugam (Morappur) were scanning the surrounding villages on Thursday.

Superintendent of Police Asra Garg inspected the spot. The Harur police have registered a case and are investigating. Further probe is on.

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