Bari: Trees are being cut down indiscriminately in many places under Bari block in Jajpur district with the administration allegedly looking the other way.
A large number of eucalyptus trees used to adorn the sides of the Bari-Balibili RD road which connects Bari-Kalamatia PWD road. However, the number of trees is dwindling rapidly in the couple of months.
Local residents saw the trees being cut and transported Thursday night. They immediately informed Bari tehsildar Manas Ranjan Bhoi who went to the spot but did not intervene. He said it is the duty of the forest department officials to protect the trees. He said he would write to the forest department seeking action from their end.
However, the tehsildar’s attitude did not go down well with the local people. Jajpur road ranger’s statement was also no less surprising. When contacted, ranger Jyoti Mohapatra said they can only take action if the concerned department entrusted with the protection of the trees lodges a complaint. “Without a complaint, we can’t take action as it is not under our jurisdiction,” the ranger said.
It is worth mentioning that BJP workers staged a demonstration protesting against illegal felling of trees on the Bari-Baruhan PWD road in front of the tehsil office, a few days ago. The tehsildar had written letters to Jajpur sub-collector and the forest department, requesting for action. However, no steps have been taken so far against the offenders.
Local residents alleged that this lenient attitude of the district administration is, in turn, helping those involved in the illegal felling of trees.