August 2021
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Bajaj Auto July sales jumps 44 pc in Jul        Pegasus issue: SC to hear on Aug 5 pleas seeking probe into snooping allegations        Dutee finishes last in her 200m heat race, fails to qualify for semifinals at Olympics        Pakistan reports spike in new COVID-19 cases        Mexico's referendum on trying ex-presidents falls short        Berlin protesters decry coronavirus measures; 600 detained        Brave Indian women create history, enter maiden Olympic hockey semifinals        Tokyo Olympics: Badminton star P V Sindhu scripts history on Super Sunday        India beat South Africa 4-3 to keep QF hopes alive in Olympic women's hockey        World No.1 Panghal's Olympic campaign ends with shocking loss to Colombian Martinez        COVID-19: India records 41,649 fresh cases, 593 more fatalities        TREMOR        Das knocks out Olympic champion in Tokyo, joins wife Deepika in last-16        Air India sold its 115 properties for Rs 738 crore since 2015: Govt        Researchers Develop Variants Of More Potent, Stable Nanobodies To Fight SARS-CoV-2        Assam, Mizoram trade barbs over deployment of security forces at interstate border        HC rejects plea to reassess minority status of Christians, Muslims in Kerala        Govt hiding on Pegasus issue, responsible for Parliament logjam: Congress        True legend of Indian badminton: tributes pour in after legendary Nandu Natekar dies        Tendulkar helps farmer's daughter to pursue dream of becoming doctor        
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Kerala News
LDF govt hand in glove with timber mafias, alleges Union Minister Muraleedharan
Wayanad: The Muttil illegal timber felling and smuggling is part of a bigger conspiracy involving senior politicians, Ministers and timber mafias and the LDF government is the first-ever to issue an order favouring the crime, alleged the Union Minister of State for External Affairs V Muraleedharan. The Minister, who along with senior BJP leader Kummanam Rajasekharan and Janatipathya Rashtriya Party chairperson and adhivasi leader C K Janu among others, was speaking to mediapersons after visiting Muttil adhivasi colony near here as part of his visit to areas from where it is alleged that centuries old and precious woods were illegally felled and smuggled early this year under an order that permitted felling of trees by farmers.

Mr Muraleedharan alleged that the timber mafias utilised the order in connivance with officials and politicians and felled hundreds of treasured trees from various part of the state including South Muttil in Wayanad district. The ''scam'' was part of a conspiracy by politicians including Ministers and the timber mafia, the Minister alleged. "Those who had condemned the Brazilian authorities for alleged neglect of a forest fire that witnessed in the Amazon rain forests a few months ago were conspiring here to illegally fell and smuggle huge quantities of woods even from the protected forests causing irreparable damages to the environment," he alleged. "No one can believe how can a Government issue an order consenting felling of trees. It is most surprising and illegal. The notification was against all norms on environmental protection.

Wayanad and Nilambur, forming part of the western ghats, had witnessed massive natural calamities including landslides during the past three years," the minister alleged. "How could anyone justify an act that would pave further degradation in the environment. No one can take it without a pinch of salt that the illegal felling and smuggling of woods from South Muttil and other places happened on a decision of an official or two, but it came from the top political leadership," he further alleged. Meanwhile, the Forest department has removed Divisional Forest Officer Dhanesh Kumar from the charge of the investigation. He has been replaced by the Punalur DFO Byju Krishnan.

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