16 held for smuggling trees from patta land in Thrissur

Representative Image / Photo: Canva

Thrissur: Forest department officials have held 16 individuals in connection with the alleged smuggling of trees from Madakkathara here. The officials also seized 73 illegally chopped trees and vehicles used for transporting them.

The trees are from the 'pattayam land' owned by Unnikrishnan, one of the accused, and fall under the Pattikkad forest range.

The accused include timber merchants, vehicle drivers and middlemen.

According to Kerala Land Assignment Act, a specific set of trees in pattayam lands cannot be felled or transported without clearance from the forest department. In this case, the accused is said to have intentionally flouted the mandate.

The trees reportedly chopped and transported from the land include Teak, Grewia and Stereospermum chelonoides.

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