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GPS fitted truck to check illegal timber smuggling in Arunachal district

Itanagar, Jan 27 (PTI) The Changlang district administration in Arunachal Pradesh has made it mandatory for trucks transporting logs, to fit global positioning system (GPS) and ply only during the daytime to check illegal felling of timbers, which is on the rise in the frontier state.

According to India State of Forest Report 2021, Arunachal Pradesh has lost about 257 sq km of its forest cover. The 2021 assessment put the forest cover at 66,430.67 sq km down from 66,687.78 sq km in 2019.

Changlang Deputy Commissioner Devansh Yadav told PTI on Friday that fitting of GPS would help track the movement of vehicles and enable a person to know the exact position of a vehicle or an individual.

The mandatory system was introduced recently with the cooperation of truck owners, the DC said.

“The move was required after public complaints about more timber being felled than the permitted quantity and beyond permitted areas as there are areas, like reserve forests or water bodies where felling is not allowed,” he reasoned.

Informing that Miao and Jairampur in the district have been hit by illegal felling of trees, Yadav said that while looking for a solution it was found that there was no data of vehicles used for transporting logs to sawmills and furniture manufacturing units in the district.

“Work on preparing the data started in October. Then we decided to get the trucks fitted with GPS to monitor end-to-end movement to ensure there was no diversion from allotted route in the district. Truck owners have supported the initiative,” the DC said, adding, over 50 trucks have been fitted with GPS out of 100 timber-carrying trucks in the district.

Each GPS installation by a Delhi-based company, costs about Rs 3,000, a forest department official said, adding the GPS installation would also help truck owners keep a tab on the movement and timing of their vehicles.

“Besides making GPS mandatory for trucks carrying timber to 15 sawmills and 38 furniture-making units, the Changlang administration has barred them from plying in the night. There will be only daytime movement to ensure effective monitoring by the forest department,” the official added. PTI COR UPL RG RG

This report is auto-generated from PTI news service. ThePrint holds no responsibility for its content.

Source: The Print

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