The Forest and Wildlife Preservation Minister, Punjab, Sadhu Singh Dharamsot has ordered immediate commencement of process throughout the state to remove illegal encroachments from the lands belonging to the forest department.Presiding over a high level meeting with the higher ups of the Forest Department here today, the minister said that the process would be commenced from the freeing of 35 acres of land land at mattewara in Ludhiana.He further said that apart from this, the illegal encroachments on 80 acres of land at Gorsian Khan Muhammad (District-Ludhiana), 147 acres at Kot Umra (Ludhiana) thus making a total of 227 acres had come to light. The minister also directed the Additional Chief Secretary (Forest) Mr. D.P. Reddy to conduct immediate meetings with higher officials of the district administration to get the illegal encroachments removed.Mr. Dharamsot further said that the Captain Amarinder Singh led Government is fully committed to root out the menace of corruption, every kind of mafia, illegal activities from the state. Disclosing more, he said that a total of 2185 acres of land falls under the jurisdiction of the Forest Department in the state.
He also assured that those encroaching upon the land illegally would be severely dealt with. He instructed the officials to begin the process of demarcation, establishing pillars and barbed wire fencing to remove encroachments.The minister also directed the departmental officers to display contact numbers depicting wildlife rules and complaints at the borders of the forest areas and slogan writing for the purpose of preserving forestry/tree plantation at special places. He also ordered the sale of forest wood lying waste in various depots and condemned material of the department through a transparent process.On the occasion, Additional Chief Secretary (Forest) Mr. D.P. Reddy, Principal Chief Conservator Forests Mr. Jatinder Sharma, Principal Chief Conservator of Forests (Wildlife) Mr. Kuldeep Kumar, Additional Principal Chief Conservator Mr. Anup Upadhyay, Managing Director Forest Corporation Mr. Dhirendra Singh, Chief Conservator Mr. Ratna Kumar, Conservator (South) Mrs. Shailendra Kaur and DFO (Ludhiana) and Mohali were also present.