Published: Wed, March 14, 2018
Global | By Marsha Munoz

At least 9 killed in TN forest fire, many trapped

At least 9 killed in TN forest fire, many trapped

The Tamil Nadu government has announced a solatium of ₹4 lakh each to the families of 10 trekkers who died in Kurangani forest fire in Theni district.

Nine people were killed and many others were injured in a fire accident that occurred in Theni of Tamil Nadu on Sunday. The deceased were identified as Subha, Hemalatha, Punitha, Akila; Arun, Vipin Dhivya, Vivek and Tamilselvan.

"Our forest department is not well prepared to fight the fires", Verma said.He also pointed to the fact that community rights of people over forests are not recognised, so local communities have fewer incentives to protect the forests. But they too are being denied entry, said a source in the Forest Department.

After 21 sorties of firefighting and rescue operations, the six-hour long mission finally concluded at 11 a.m. Eight trekkers were sent to the circuit house.

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Mr Palanisami has said rescue operations are underway on a war footing and his deputy O Panneerselvem, Forest Minister Dindigul C Srinivasan and top officials are overseeing the operations.

Also, the expedition was organized by a Chennai-based trekking club which had not taken permission from the forest department.

Seven women and three men were killed in the fire at Kurangani Hill ranges in Western Ghats.

A woman leaves the Theni Government Medical College hospital after meeting a relative who was injured in the Kurangani forest fire.

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As summer months are the peak tourist season, the Department offices across Karnataka are flooded with applications from wildlife enthusiasts seeking permission for trekking.

Relatives of the hikers grieve outside the hospital in Theni. They were supposed to return on Sunday. He also thanked Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman for deploying the IAF team in the rescue effort.

Nearby Kolukkumalai hills is stated to be the home to highest tea estate in the world located at an altitude close to 8,000 feet, according to Tamil Nadu "favtourism" blog.

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