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PDP asks Governor admin to desist from issuing ‘Tughlaki Farmaans’

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Seeks reversal of recent order over timber distribution

Srinagar, Dec 2: As the government scrapped the earlier procedure of timer distribution in state’s higher reaches, Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has termed the decision “anti-people and a covert way to allow illicit extraction of timber from state’s forests”.

In a statement issued here, former minster and PDP general secretary Abdul Haq Khan said that earlier the government had devised a mechanism in accordance to which the distribution of timber was done as per the zones in the state.

There were three main zones called A, B and C and as per the established practice, those living closer to forests used to get the timber at subsidised rates, he said.

“However, as per the new ‘Farmaan’ (directive) issued by the Governor administration, the zone system has been scraped and replaced with the BPL and APL category,” Khan said.

He said the people living closer to forests used to get one CFT of timber at the rate of Rs 300 and now the same timer would cost them more than Rs 1400 rupees in the same area.

The PDP general secretary added that the earlier practice of timber distribution was the outcome of a well-considered decision which was also an eco-friendly one.

“Those who were living in the closer vicinity of the forests have a due right to get the timber at the subsidised rates.  The procedure was also keeping a check on illicit extraction of timber. However, the new order is going to promote that,” Khan said.

He added that it is ironic that the Governor administration is taking the “most thoughtless decisions” without assessing the ground situation.

“Those at the helm at present in the state do not understand the importance of timber as a construction material in the state. They must bear in mind that Jammu and Kashmir is not Chattisgarh, Haryana or Karnataka. Right balance had been struck by those who introduced the system after thorough deliberations and after considering the models prevalent in the eco-fragile area,” Khan said, while demanding immediate reversal of this latest “Tughlaki Farmaan.”

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