TINSUKIA: Due to lack of coordination between the State Government and Forest Department, the vexed rehabilitation issue of two forest villages within the core areas of Dibru-Saikhowa National Park (DSNP) remains to be resolved. In fact, the Chief Minister's assurance has been over ruled by the forest department, alleged the Takam Mising Porin Kabang (TMPK).
In a press meet at Tinsukia Press Club on Tuesday, vice-president of Tinsukia district committee of TMPK, Minturaj Morang said that if 1,480 families of Laika and Dodhiya were not rehabilitated within a month, the organization would launch vigorous agitation which might lead to serious consequences. The latest move to rehabilitate the families on 470 hac degraded forest at Aguri under Upper Dihing Reserve Forest was also sabotaged by vested circles in collusion with the forest department. The latter objected to felling of 7,000 trees to clear the land even as official desks were cleared both by the Chief Minister's office and Tinsukia district administration, Morang alleged.
Though the forest villagers were always in favour of conservation and voluntarily opted to move out of the National Park, the forest department kept stalling the process under various pretexts, said Ajay Doley, assistant secretary of TMPK. He further informed that a mass public meeting would be held on December 5 to chalk out the future course of action, adding that the TMPK activists along with forest dwellers would not hesitate to occupy any forest land forcibly for which they would not be held accountable. The government must bear all responsibility for any eventuality, Doley asserted. Among others present in the press meet were Anath Layeng, president of MMK Tinsukia district committee, and Suchen Doley, president of TMPK.