Surveillance stepped up in restricted forest areas near Malabar sanctuary

The Forest Department and the police have stepped up surveillance measures against the illegal entry and camping of tourists in restricted forest areas around the Malabar Wildlife Sanctuary in Kozhikode district. The measures come in the wake of an incident in which a young woman was trampled to death by a wild elephant while she was camping in Wayanad district on Saturday.

Though such highly vulnerable camping locations are fewer in number in Kozhikode, social media posts and videos by some travellers have been attracting many people from remote areas to restricted forest sites in Kozhikode. Trekking activities in unpermitted regions have also been noticed by local residents, and police and forest squads.

There have been many incidents in which tourists from other districts were found illegally camping near various ecotourism spots such as Kakkayam, Vayalada, Kakkadampoyil, Arippara and Vellarimala. On many occasions, it was local residents who opposed the entry of such persons and informed the police.

A Forest official from the Thamarassery range office said the forest area around Peruvannamoozhi was frequented by such illegal entrants. “This spot can be accessed by people from multiple interior roads from villages such as Thalayad, Vayalada, Kattippara and Muthukad. It is very difficult to constantly monitor all these paths,” he said.

A Thiruvambady resident said there were many incidents in which people trekking through dense forest areas had fallen into rivers and lost their lives. Many first-time visitors were least bothered about safety issues while joining alcohol parties, dangerous photoshoots and swimming activities, he added.

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Printable version | Mar 8, 2021 7:07:19 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/kozhikode/surveillance-stepped-up-in-restricted-forest-areas-near-malabar-sanctuary/article33651896.ece

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