TODAY -

Poppy plants destroyed, three held; chiefs summoned
Source: Chronicle News Service

Imphal, January 30 2023: A joint team of Tengnoupal district police, NAB and Tengnoupal forest division destroyed poppy plants found growing in around 55 acres of land in SL Zougam village area in Tengnoupal district on Monday.

The joint team led by Machi police station OC inspector S Ibotombi began the operation from 10.45 am and continued till 4.40 pm.

SDC Roshanjit was also present during the operation.

According to inspector Ibotombi, the poppy plants destroyed by the team on Monday were ready for harvest and it would produce around 550 kg of opium, which would worth around Rs 3.92 crore in the international market.

Another combined team of Imphal East district police led by Lamlai SDPO and assisted by NAB, Forest department officials and 4 Assam Rifles accompanied by Saikul executive magistrate earned out poppy destruction drive along the hill ranges of L Lhangnom village, during which about 22 acres of illegal poppy plantations were destroyed and two poppy planters arrested.

The arrested poppy planters have been identified as Seiboigin Baite, secretary of L Lhangnom village and Soginlun Baite, member of L Lhangnom village under Saikul sub-division, Kangpokpi district .

A regular case has been registered at Sagolmang police station for further investigation.

Meanwhile, Divisional Forest Officer, Kangpokpi Forest Division issued a summon order to the chiefs/chairmen/village authority of various villages for a review meeting regarding encroachments and illegal poppy cultivation being carried out in the surrounding hill areas of the fringe villages.

According to the Range Forest Officer (RFO), HQ, Kangpokpi Forest Division, a combined team of Kangpokpi Forest Division, Kangpokpi District Police, NAB, NCB, and army personnel had carried out destruction drives of poppy plantations in the hill ranges of Phoibung, Thotne, Makuli, Chandraman, Amaledara, Mahabir, L Thomjang, Mangjol, Kolpechang, Phaijang and Songpehjang in recent weeks.

It was observed that many of the poppy plantation areas fell within notified forest areas of the district, while agricultural cultivation was still being carried out by the above fringe villages in the lower reaches of the notified forest hill ranges despite the ban on trespassing and encroachment inside notified forest lands, the RFO added.

The RFO also said that an order banning entry, trekking, and camping-related activities inside Reserved Forest was issued (vide Office Order No TEC-FD/3/2022 e-FOR) on January 26, 2023 .

Meanwhile, trespassing, breaking up of land for non-forestry pur poses, and encroachment into a Reserved and Protected Forest are clear violations of the rules and regulations i.e., Indian Forest Act, 1927 read with Manipur Forest Rules, 2021, laid down by the government for protection and conservation of Forest land and are punishable under relevant sections of the said laws, the DFO informed.

The DFO then issued a summon order to the chiefs/chairmen/village authorities of the above fringe villages for a review meeting.

bIn another development, a team of Singhat police station arrested one Ginkhanpau (60), son of Lamkhogin of Vaal Veng, New Lamka from his residence around 4:30 pm on January 28 in connection with an FIR filed at Singhat police station under section 18(c) of ND&PS Act which relates to illegal poppy cultivation.

According to sources, on preliminary investigation, it was confirmed that Ginkhanpau is the caretaker of the land where poppy plants were found cultivated and he collects some amount of money from each of the poppy cultivators.

Further investigation is underway, the sources added.


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