Woman forest officer assaulted

Forest officer Chole Anitha being attacked by villagers at Sarasala village in Kagaznagar manda of Kumram Bheem Asifabad district on Sunday.

Forest officer Chole Anitha being attacked by villagers at Sarasala village in Kagaznagar manda of Kumram Bheem Asifabad district on Sunday.   | Photo Credit: BYARRANGEMENT

In a gruesome incident, Kagaznagar Forest Officer Chole Anitha and her staff were attacked with bamboo sticks by Zilla Parishad vice-chairperson Koneru Krishna and his supporters at Sarasala village of Kumram Bheem Asifabad district on Sunday morning.

The officials had gone there to take up plantation on forest land.

Ms. Anitha had her hand fractured while a Forest Beat Officer received injuries. Both were being treated at a private hospital in Kagaznagar town.

Krishna is the younger brother of Sirpur MLA Koneru Konappa and both belong to the ruling Telangana Rashtra Samithi.

The woman officer was accompanied by 40 forest department personnel and 30 policemen.

They had gone to the forest land in compartments 133 and 136 in reserve forest block of Kadamba to take up plantation on the 20-hectare degraded forest land, as part of compensatory afforestation for the land lost in the construction of the Kaleshwaram project.

The villagers who objected to the forest personnel clearing the place for taking up plantation suddenly attacked the officials with sticks and damaged the tractor which the forest personnel had brought for ploughing.

Of the 16 persons who stand accused in the case, police arrested Krishna and his close associate Boora Posham. The accused were charged with attempt to murder, beating up government officials, damaging public property, possession of deadly weapons and unlawful assembly under Sections 147, 148, 307, 332, 341, 353, and 427 read with 149 of the IPC.

The police clamped prohibitory orders under Section 30, Police Act, 1861, in the entire KB Asifabad district. The order prohibits gathering of people or carrying weapons.

Meanwhile, the prime accused sent in his resignation letter as ZP vice-chairperson and Zilla Parishad Territorial Constituency member from Kagaznagar. He cited reasons of harassment by forest officials with regard to cultivation of podu lands.

‘Protection sought’

Kagaznagar Forest Divisional Officer M. Raja Ramana Reddy, in a press note, said the District Collector and the Superintendent of Police had been apprised of the action being initiated by the Forest Department to take up plantation. They had been requested to provide police force while clearing work was in progress.

The note accused the local MLA and others of harbouring mala fide intentions to occupy reserve forest land and inciting villagers. About six years ago, an attempt had been made to occupy the land, which was averted, and no cultivation was taken up there, it added

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Printable version | Feb 29, 2020 7:09:52 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Hyderabad/woman-forest-officer-assaulted-by-mob-in-kagaznagar/article28236610.ece

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