Thousands of Sal trees were illegally cut without due permission from the authorities by the alleged land mafia in the Viakasnagar area of Dehradun in Uttarakhand. Now the matter has reached the Uttarakhand High Court. High Court Chief Justice Raghvendra Singh Chauhan has now sent notice to the Forest Department Secretary, Dehradun District Magistrate and District Forest Officer of Kalsi including four private parties and others.
The HC has asked DM Dehradun, SDM and DFO to inspect the site and submit their response by August 17. The court has asked whether due permission was given before the cutting of the trees and if not so, then what action has been taken against the alleged offenders.
The matter is possibly linked to the land mafia and jungle mafia. Activist Rakesh Tomar in his PIL filed in the High Court has alleged that land mafia illegally cut thousands of Sal trees in Vikasnagar Tehsil. After complaints the DFO only accepted the cutting of 147 trees. The petition mentioned that Builders had complained about the cutting of the trees but no action was taken.
The petition alleged that on the demand of the land mafia to level the field, the Tehsildar prepared a false report that there were no trees on the land without field inspection.
The petitioner pleaded before the court that cutting of Sal trees should be stopped immediately and whoever cuts a tree must plant two saplings.
The petitioner has asked the High Court to take strict action against the corrupt officials involved in this matter.