Wildfire near Ajanta Caves put out

Wildfire near Ajanta Caves put out

16 March 2008

published by www.hindu.com

India — The wildfire raging in the forest close to the world famous Ajanta Caves in Aurangabad district of Maharashtra for two days was put out on Friday, but not before the flames claimed about 50 hectares.

Three labourers, engaged in putting out the flames, were injured. “The forest staff and labourers fought the flames with shrubs for no fire engine or tanker could be taken to the jungle,” Range Forest Officer D.J. Phule told The Hindu on phone from Soegaon, the tehsil town.

Mr. Phule said the blaze engulfed the forest and the vegetation-free belt created to prevent the spreading of fire was not of much help because of the wind. He said the fire could have been caused by a spark from overhead electric transmission lines of the State Corporation.

He maintained that trees were not burnt. But local sources said most of the trees in the forest were lost.

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