The Uttarakhand fire, so far has destroyed 3,000 acre of forest land according to official sources. Union Minister of State for Environment, Forests and Climate Change Prakash Javadekar said that four people were arrested in connection with the Uttarakhand forest fire that destroyed a major part of the reserve forests. The four people will be investigated and strict action will be taken, Javadekar said. “Not a single inch of forest land will be allowed to be encroached or diverted by anybody,” he added.
The fire began 88 days ago. The minister said it will take two more days to douse the forest fire. The union home ministry also stated that about 6,000 people from the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF), State Disaster Response Force (SDRF), state police, forest staff and volunteers were deployed.
The union home ministry had sent a four-member expert team to Uttarakhand on sunday, to look into the forest fires in the state and submit its report within a week after taking stock of the situation. The team comprises Santosh Kumar, executive director of the National Institute of Disaster Management; S.P. Vashist, deputy inspector general of forests under the ministry of environment and forests; K.C. Wadhwa, special director at the Centre for Fire Explosives and Environment Safety; and G.C. Mishra, director of Fire Services, Delhi.
Javadekar also said that he has asked to deploy more than 10,000 employees to put out the Uttarakhand forest fire in three-four days.
The Prime Minister’s Office (PMO), National Disaster Response Force (NDRF), and Indian Air Force are working in tandem to douse the fire.