Punjab Forest Department to provide weapons to staff

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Chandigarh, June 20 (IANS) A day after a Punjab Forest Department officer was critically injured and five others also received serious injuries in an attack by goons of the illegal sand mafia, state Forest Minister Sadhu Singh Dharamsot said on Wednesday that department officials would be provided weapons.

“The Forest Department will arm its employees with weapons for the security of forest areas. A policy in this regard would be prepared and sent to the cabinet for approval,” he said.

Block Officer Devinder Singh received critical head injuries and had to undergo surgery at the Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research (PGIMER) here on Tuesday after he and other officials were attacked brutally by goons of the sand mafia.

Another forest employee, Karnail Singh, was admitted in hospital with skull fracture and other serious injuries.

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The attack took place early on Tuesday in Seonk area of Mohali district, around 10 km from here.

“The incident which happened at village Seonk is quite unfortunate and the perpetrators would not be spared. Attacks by the sand mafia on the Forest Department employees are being taken with utmost seriousness and in future the departmental employees would be provided weapons,” the minister said.

The minister said that four people who were allegedly involved in the attack have been arrested.

–IANS

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