It has been accused in the District Coordinating Committee meeting of the Kilinochchi District that, the Forest Department is acting to obstruct development work. The Kilinochchi District Secretary had reprimanded the District Officer in Charge of the Forest Department. A minor altercation occurred between the Forest Department OIC and the District Secretary after the meeting on releasing lands of the people which are under the control of the Army.
The Forest Department Official had said that all state lands are in their charge and any activity undertaken in them have to be done after obtaining their permission and those actions also should be accordance with their procedures. Pointing out that the Power transfer act no: 58 of the year 1992, powers regarding the state lands have been vested with the District Secretary, he accused that the Forest Department is obstructing works undertaken by him.
The Forest Department’s District Officer in Charge said that under circular no: 5/2001 All state forests and all lands that could transform into wilderness are given to the Forest Department. We are acting according to that. A special definition has been given as to what is a forest in Amended Forests Act of 2009 and we also acting in accordance with our laws and regulations he said.At this point, the TNA MP Sumanthiran pointed out to the District Secretary that action could be filed against this Forest Officer in Court.