By Our Kokrajhar Bureau
Kokrajhar (Assam) ,Jan 14 : Sensational prevails along the Ultapani Saralpara under Haltugaon forest division along the Indo-Bhutan border in Kokrajhar district following encroachers trying to forcefully occupy forest lands.
The incident took place at Ultapani Gorai Bazar along the Ultapani-Saralpara road at around 10 am yesterday morning which left a vehicle damaged and serious injuries on forest staff.
Earlier , illegal encroachers had attacked the Ultapani forest office on Aug 17 last year .
According to forest officials, hundreds of illegal encroachers had gathered at Gorai Bazar along the Ultapani Saralpara road in the morning on Wednesday and were trying to occupy the forest lands for settlement inside the Haltugaon forest division. The encroachers were seen ready with tools for cutting forests and settling inside the forest areas.
On getting information , the forest department staff tried to prevent the encroachers from occupying the forest land but the forest guards were attacked by the encroachers and several vehicles belonging to the forest department were damaged at Gorai Bazar.
Six forest staff received serious injuries.
Seeing the situation tense, forest department and police had to resort to blank firing in the air to disperse the encroachers and bring the situation under control .
As many as16 persons have been arrested for attack on forest staff and vehicles on Wednesday .
A team of police led by SP Kokrajhar Rakesh Roushan rushed to the spot to bring the situation under control .
Officials and jawans from CRPF,SSB,Indian army rushed to the spot to diffuse the situation .
Police has been able to seize two vehicles and a bike which were used by illegal encroachers while attacking the forest guards .
Range officer of Ultapani range,Hemanta Mushahary said that nearly 1000 persons from different places gathered at Gorai Bazar and tried to occupy the forest lands forcefully where forest department and police had to fire nearly 50 rounds of blank firing .
He said that the illegal encroachers had already -planned to attack and create chaos in the region .
SP Kokrajhar Rakesh Roushan said several sharp weapons including Kukhri were seized from illegal encroachers.
“Police is imitating strong action and more people would be arrested for their involvement with the incident “,