: A day after The Hindu reported the encroachments in the form of illegal constructions in the Qutb Shahi tombs complex, thieves chopped down and decamped with 10 sandalwood trees from the rear portion of the premises on Monday night.
Similarly, sandalwood trees were chopped and stolen from the NIRD campus last week. Post the theft, officials from the Archaeology Department said they would beef up the security at the necropolis.
Following the incident, a complaint was lodged with the Golconda police, and the cops are investigating, said a senior official from the Department of Archaeology and Museums.
The theft had taken place behind the Hamam Baoli area, where The Hindu had reported how massive constructions have come up and are currently ongoing.
The encroachments may have enabled the thieves to steal the sandalwood trees easily, as the boundary wall at the south-end is not so high, said the official.
“We constructed the high compound wall at the rear. But at the extreme end the wall is not so high. To arrest further encroachments, we put a lower wall,” said the official, and added that a watch-tower, floodlights and CCTV cameras will be set up in the coming week to ensure that there is no more theft.
The official added that the theft could have been going on for a long time, as there were holes inside the trees to check their maturity. “On inspection on Tuesday, each tree had marks of testing holes. Looks like the thieves had marked the trees long ago. Since the whole area is dark, we have decided to beef up security in the area now,” he stated.