India — A raging forest fire in the Saranda forest of Jharkhand has become a cause of concern for locals as well as the authorities.
Locals say that frequent fires at Saranda, one of the largest Sal forests in Asia, are a result of the carelessness on part of the nomadic people who burn wood logs to cook food near the forest area.
People also carelessly throw away cigarette butts that have not been stubbed out.
The people who live here forget the fact that they are living near the mine area. The careless attitude results in these forest fires. The animals flee from the forest area. Steps should be taken to control similar incidents in the future, said Madhu Sudhan, a local.
The deciduous Saranda forest is vulnerable to forest fires during the scorching summers. Dry leaves start piling up ahead of the summers in February itself.
According to the authorities, a fire line process through which the dry leaves can be arranged and burnt in a controlled environment to avoid forest fires, is the need of the hour.
The forest officials claim that they have got the green chit for making a fire line to keep the forests safe.
We send many teams to tackle the forest fires. But this time, we are taking concrete steps. We have got an approval for a 135 kilometres fire line in the region. The work has begun, said A.R. Netesha, Deputy Forest Officer, Saranda.