Smuggling of timber on riseAs authorities have relaxed restriction on firewood collection from forests in view of the ongoing fuel crisis in the country, timber smugglers are taking advantage of the situation
As authorities have relaxed restriction on firewood collection from forests in view of the ongoing fuel crisis in the country, timber smugglers are taking advantage of the situation and stripping down forests in many parts of Kavre district.
Police sources claim that illegal loggers are working in collusion with some forest officials. The nexus between forest officials and
timber smugglers came to light after Banepa Area Police Office arrested one Hari Krishna Thapa along with a vehicle laden with Uttis (Nepalese alder) logs on November 5.
Thapa and the seized logs were handed over to Janagal Area Forest Office. However, the seized logs were delivered to a furniture factory at Kamalbinayak on the same day police had handed them over to the forest office, said one police officer at Kavre District Police Office. The officer added that two men identified as Shiva Mahat and Rajendra Karki had visited the forest office, retrieved the seized timber, and sent them to the furniture factory at Kamalbinayak. Thapa had made the delivery.
On the following day of the incident, Thapa had delivered a consignment of low quality timber to the forest office in another vehicle (Na 2 Kha 1737) . Thapa is currently in police custody. He admitted to police that he was hired by Mahat and Karki to deliver the logs. Assistant Forest Officer Bachhuram Pudasaine denied the involvement of forest officers. He said Thapa and the timber were reseized and handed over to police.
District Forest Officer Prem Khanal said the matter is being investigated.