Forest employees seek powers, tools to fight smugglers

Demanding immediate arrest of timber smugglers who attacked forest officials on Sunday at RamporaKandi forest range at Sopore on Sunday, scores of employees of forest department Monday staged a protest demonstration.

Demanding immediate arrest of timber smugglers who attacked forest officials on Sunday at RamporaKandi forest range at Sopore on Sunday, scores of employees of forest department Monday staged a protest demonstration. The demanded powers and adequate tools to fight the menace of timber smuggling. 

A team of forest department came under attack on Sunday after they raided RamporaKandi forest range to nab timber smugglers. While conducting search operation in some residential houses, the officials of the department came under severe attack resulting in grievous injuries to some employees. 

The agitating employees said that they don't have any protection while confronting the armed timber smugglers and besides demanding adequate tools to deal with the menace of timber smuggling, the protesting employees sought arrest of the attackers. 

"Being ill equipped, we are always vulnerable to such adverse situations. The department has forest protection force but unfortunately they don't carry weapons or such tools during the raids, " saidParvez Ahmad Hamdani, an official of the department.

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