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HomeNewsIllegal tree cutting Controversy: Corbett Tiger Reserve and Kalagarh Forest Division

Illegal tree cutting Controversy: Corbett Tiger Reserve and Kalagarh Forest Division

Illegal tree cutting and unlawful development are two recent problems that have detracted from the tranquil scenery of the Corbett Tiger Reserve (CTR) and the adjoining Kalagarh Forest Division. The natural balance of this pristine region is in jeopardy due to the nearly 6,000 instances connected to these operations. The Nainital High Court requested a Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) investigation because of the seriousness of the situation. Despite the fact that the Supreme Court is currently considering the issue, it is important to note that the government’s position on this probe is still divisive.

The Response of the Government

Subodh Uniyal, the minister of forests, has categorically declared that the government is treating this issue very seriously. He highlighted that people are ready to file a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) before the Supreme Court if there are any uncertainties or concerns about the government’s conduct. This action would ensure transparency in the proceedings and subject the High Court’s decision to close examination.

The state vigilance department is currently looking into these situations, according to Minister Uniyal. Notably, two people have already been detained as part of this continuing inquiry, including a former Divisional Forest Officer (DFO). They have been named in a lengthy charging sheet.

It is clear that the government is leery of a CBI inquiry into this matter notwithstanding these precautions. Several senior employees of the Forest Department, including former Forest Minister Dr. Harak Singh Rawat, may be implicated in such an investigation.

Resulting Effects for Dr. Harak Singh Rawat

The difficulties for former Forest Minister Dr. Harak Singh Rawat could increase dramatically if a CBI investigation is launched. Dr. Rawat, a former cabinet minister in the BJP administration, is now a supporter of the Congress party. Recent occurrences have increased the focus on him, leading to vigilance raids at his premises.

Position of CEC in the Situation

The Supreme Court’s intervention, which is currently supervising the case, adds still another dimension to this complicated scenario. The participation of former Forest Minister Dr. Harak Singh Rawat and other officials in the illegal tree cutting and unlicensed construction activities that took place in Paharo during the 2019–20 academic year has come under scrutiny by the Supreme Court’s Central Empowered Committee (CEC).

Notably, during this time a tiger safari was being built in the enormous 106-hectare Paharo area of the Corbett Tiger Reserve. The project required substantial construction and tree-cutting. But soon after, a Supreme Court appeal in the public interest arose, sparking a flurry of interest in the issue.

Investigations Increasing in Level

Investigations into these acts then gathered steam. The CEC has been closely observing the events, together with other interested parties. Environmentalists and conservationists throughout the world have taken notice of the claims of unlawful construction and illegal tree cutting in such a vulnerable habitat.

The issue has evolved from purely administrative concerns to a substantial environmental issue that is receiving both national and international attention. Because of this, the government must manage this matter with the utmost care and transparency.

The Next Steps

To sum up, the Corbett Tiger Reserve and the Kalagarh Forest Division are at a crossroads, fending off the shadows of unauthorized development and illicit tree cutting. If it is launched, the impending CBI inquiry could significantly change the course of the people involved and the region as a whole.

This incident highlights the value of environmental protection and the requirement for strict regulations to safeguard our natural heritage. No one is above the law, regardless of their position or political affiliation, and this serves as a sobering reminder of that.

One thing is certain as we wait for more information in this developing story: the nation and the world continue to focus on the Corbett Tiger Reserve and the Kalagarh Forest Division in the hopes of finding a solution that preserves the values of justice and environmental preservation.

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