Court orders Ampara DS to make statement over felling of Kumbuk Tree

Court orders Ampara DS to make statement over felling of Kumbuk Tree

Written by Bella Dalima

04 Sep, 2014 | 9:47 pm

The Namalu-Oya Pradeshiya Sabha on Thursday  unanimously passed a resolution against the Action TV expose on the 16th of last month, citing that the Action TV report had caused an inconvenience to the Ampara Divisional Secretary.

Action TV revealed on  August 12  that a Kumbuk Tree in the Kotawehera area in Ampara was being felled and stripped for timber and that it was raided by the Forest Conservation Officers.

Action TV also revealed that the Ampara Divisional Secretary had directed a letter to the Grama Niladhari Officer of Kotawehera on August 7 over the incident, which contained false information.

The forest reserve in which the Kumbuk Tree in question was located at, falls under the purview of the Namalu-Oya Pradeshiya Sabha. When you consider the views expressed by the members of the Pradeshiya Sabha during the debate, it is clear that  either they are not aware of the issue in question or they have been misled by a certain individuals.

In the letter dated  August 7, the Divisional Secretary says that the timber of the Kumbuk Tree in question was to be used for the renovation of the Divisional Secretariat. In Addition, the B report presented to court along with the three suspects by the Forest Conservation Department are similar to what was exposed by Action TV.

The Chief Magistrate of Ampara had ordered the Ampara Divisional Secretary and the Grama Niladhari Officer of Kotawehera to provide statements to the forest conservations officers over the incident.

This order was issued after the Forest Conservation Department complained to court that the Ampara Divisional Secretary and the Grama Niladhari Officer of Kotawehera had refused to provide statements to the department.

Meanwhile, one of the Kumbuk trees in the Kotawehera Forest Reserve that was set ablaze by certain individuals in the recent past, had fallen to the ground today.

 

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