Kothagudem: Tribals beat up forest staff and tied a forest beat officer to a tree in Chintaguppa forests of Dummugudem mandal in the district on Monday.
The incident took place under the limits of D Kothur forest beat area where digging of trench covering around 25 hectares of forest land was underway to protect the forest.
The tribals, mainly women, damaged chairs and beat up the driver of a forest vehicle in addition to thrashing forest beat officers Hussain, Rajesh and Vijaya and fastening Rajesh to a tree expressing their anger against the trench work on lands over which they claimed ownership.
Speaking to the media, Rajesh said they visited the village to make arrangements for the DFO’s inspection at the work site. The villagers initially opposed the work but after holding talks with them, they agreed for the trenching work to continue.
For reasons unknown, they suddenly changed their stance and attacked the forest staff, he said. It was learnt that Pinapaka MLA, Rega Kantha Rao, visited the village a couple of days ago and assured the tribals of providing pattas for their podu lands.
Based on the complaint of the forest staff, the local police booked a case in connection with the incident. The DFO and other senior officials were not available for a comment about the incident.
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