Reyaz Rashid

Two vehicles seized with illicit timbers

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Driver set free under political pressure, allege locals

Rafiabad : While forest department claims to have launched ‘war’  against timber smuggling, forest officials in Rafiabad have allegedly set free the divers of two  vehicles seized with illicit timber.

The drivers and few smugglers were arrested along with illicit timber in Rafiabad area in north Kashmir’s Baramulla district on Tuesday midnight

The forest officials said that department seized one vehicle bearing registration number JK0GA 9988 at Nowpora Kalan , while another one with Chasis Number CH 374481 MUZ 991699 at Reban village.

However, locals alleged that officials on duty managed to set free drivers of seized vehicles after some local politicians interfered in this matter.

Ranger officer Rafiabad Abdul Qayoom when contacted denied such information about setting free culprits adding that the drivers of both vehicles managed to escape before they could be arrested.

Conservator of Forest North Circle Irfan Rasool said, “we are investigating the matter.  We will register FIR in this regard.”

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