JAMMU: The Forest Department in an operation against the illegal saw mills, conducted surprise checking of saw mills in Khoon, Bharnada, Majalta areas of Jindrah Forest Range and Kalidhar Range of Akhnoor, under Jammu Forest Division and dismantled five illegal saw mills today.
Official sources said that the team led by DFO Jammu, Dr Arshdeep Singh and assisted by Dy Director FPF Suresh Sharma conduct raids and dismantled three illegal saw mills being operated in the name and style of Rumal Singh Saw Mill at Khoon, Bansi Lal Saw Mill at Bharnada, Sanjay Kumar, son of Girdhari Lal at Sunal. The parts of the saw mills were also seized by the joint team.
The operation was carried out after the Divisional Forest Officer Jammu received information from locals that some persons without valid licenses were operating saw mills. The DFO directed for immediate checking and it was found that saw mills were functioning against the violation of SRO 103 of 2012 Saw Mills Rules. Even the mills were in operation at the time of raids.
In an another operation two saw mills at village Khuga and Sangam of Kalidhar Forest Range operated by Joginderpal at village Khuga and Balvinder Kumar at Village Sangam were seized by the team of Forest officials headed by Surinder Nath, Range Officer, Kalidhar.
There was some resistance from the owners of the illegal saw mills but the situation was handled with the help of Forest Protection Force staff. The mill parts were also seized. The Forest Offence Report (FOR) has been registered against owners of the saw mills for violation of SRO 103 and under various sections of J&K Forest Act.
Naveen Shah, Conservator of Forests, East Circle Jammu supervised the whole operation and appreciated the efforts of field staff.