Tribal group accuses forest officials of implicating member


Bhopal : A tribal rights group in Madhya Pradesh Sunday complained to the Election Commission that forest officials had implicated its member in “false cases” under the Wildlife Protection Act because he was assisting a Lok Sabha candidate supported by it and other local groups in Khandwa.

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In the complaint, the Adivasi Ekta Sangathan, working for the uplift of tribals in the state’s Nimar region, said it “encouraged rural people to nominate their own candidate in the Lok Sabha election with a view to intervening in the democratic process and they selected Nahar Singh as their candidate for Khandwa seat supported by Lok Rajneeti Manch and other human right groups”.

However, they alleged that this “did not suit the forest officials who beat up and took away Gopal Dubey – the Sangathan activist working for Nahar Singh in his election office at Borgaon market place in Khandwa on April 18”.

The group’s founder Vijay Bhai told IANS that the forest officials later registered a false case against Dubey under various sections of Wildlife (Protection) Act 1972, charging him with hunting wild animals including deer, though he alleged the officials took him to a secluded place in the jungle and photographed him with the carcass of a wild animal.

The group has also complained to the police and Khandwa collector A.B. Singh and even filed an application in the high court.

Vijay Bhai demanded Dubey be set free and the guilty forest officials including the ranger and the deputy ranger, whom he charged with colluding with the forest mafia in illegal activities, be punished.