UP minister’s aides create ruckus in Pilibhit Tiger Reserve

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Officials of the Pilibhit Tiger Reserve (PTR) are up in arms against the aides of UP forest minister Arun Kumar Saxena, who allegedly abused and thrashed a driver.

A written complaint has been filed at Mathotanda police station by the victim, Irfan Hussain.

“The key accused is one Mukesh Singh who described himself as an office-bearer of the Akhil Bhartiya Vidyarthi Parishad,” Irfan claimed.

The FIR is yet to be registered.

Naveen Khandelwal, divisional forest officer (DFO) of PTR, has also written to superintendent of police Dinesh Kumar P for immediate action against the accused people.

“We had been informed that around 12 aides of the forest minister were in Pilibhit and asked to arrange for a jungle safari. We had sent three vehicles for them but more than 30 men used them,” said Khandelwal.

“We have registered a departmental case against these people under sections of the Wildlife Protection Act, 1972 for causing disturbance to wildlife and breaching forest laws. The station house officer of Madhotanda police station has also been asked to register an FIR,” he added.

Jungle guides and safari vehicle drivers in PTR have threatened to stop work if action is not taken against the group.

Gaurav Bishnoi, the station house officer concerned, said a probe is on and legal action would be taken after the report is submitted.

The minister could not be contacted for his comment.

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