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In a joint operation, the Chittoor Task Force and Penamaluru police unearthed a red sanders dump at New Auto Nagar on the city outskirts on Monday. They recovered more than 30 tonnes of the wood, worth more than Rs. 100 crore.
Putalapattu police had recently registered a case of red sanders smuggling and arrested an accused, N. Raja Narmada Reddy alias Naresh Reddy. Based on the information provided by him, the task force team headed by Circle Inspector M. Giridhar and Sub-Inspector D. Muniswamy with the help of Vijayawada East Zone Assistant Commissioner of Police K.M. Maheswara Raju and Penamaluru Circle Inspector J. Murali Krishna conducted the raid on a godown and seized the logs.
Smugglers in custody
Chittoor Superintendent of Police G. Srinivas said police were trying to trace the origin and destination of the seized wood. Police have already taken two persons into custody, and details will be known after investigation, the SP said.
Vijayawada Deputy Commissioner of Police (Law and Order) Tafseer Iqbal said the cost of red sanders in the international market is quite high, and that the seized timber would be worth more than Rs. 100 crore. Police are assessing the value of the red sanders with the help of Forest officials, he said.
Godown owner untraced
“We are trying to track down the owner of the godown in which the timber was stored. Police will keep a vigil to prevent red sanders transportation,” said Mr. Iqbal.
Cases have been registered against the accused under various Sections of the IPC, AP Forest Act 1969, AP Red Sandalwood and Red Sanders Transit Rule 1969, Section 29 of the Wild Life Protection Act 1972, Section 55 (2) of the Bio-Diversity Act and Section 27 of the Arms Act, said the Chittoor Task Force police.
From: The Hindu