A week after Madhya Pradesh forest officials allegedly used pellet guns against Adivasi farmers injuring four, state forest minister Umang Singhar on Monday assured villagers that investigation in the matter is underway, justice will be delivered and the ones at the fault will be punished.
Congress MLA Umang Singhar on Monday went around the forest near Siwal village in Burhanpur district, to look at the condition after the incident of July 9 where forest officials used pellet guns against Adivasi farmers who were resisting an eviction drive in the village. In the clash, four Adivasi men were injured, and one had to be taken to a hospital in Indore.
As quoted in the reports, a junior police official at Nepanagar police station stated that the villagers attacked first. “Around 150 Adivasis from the village started protesting and pelting stones at the forest officials,” said the police officer, who did not wish to be named. “To bring the situation under control, the forest officials began firing in the air, and in the process some Adivasis got injured.”
Reacting to the incident, Singhar said that culprits will not be spared. While on inspection drive, Umang Singhar spoke to tribal villagers and assured them that the fair investigation of the case was being done. “Only after the investigation report comes out, it will be possible to find that whether forest department personnel intentionally operated or operated in self defense. The culprits will not be spared,” said Singhar.
The Nepanagar Police has registered two First Information Reports in the case. In the first FIR, three unidentified forest officials have been booked under Sections 336 and 337 of the Indian Penal Code, for rash and negligent actions that cause hurt and endanger human life.