Published: Wed, March 14, 2018
Global News | By Stacy Ballard

Rules are simple, but must follow to enter forest: TN

Rules are simple, but must follow to enter forest: TN

The fire broke out late Sunday evening when a group of almost 40 people, mostly young college students, went trekking in Kurangini hills in Theni district, 540 kms from state capital Chennai.

Ten people, who were part of a trekking expedition, have been killed in a forest fire in the Western Ghats, the Tamil Nadu government said.

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Tamil Nadu Deputy Chief Minister, Thiru O. Panneerselvam, visited the site, Monday, tweeting images of officials inspecting the smoldering hills in the aftermath of the blaze. Also, the Theni District Collector Pallavi Baldev said that the search was on for others and will try their best to cooperate with search teams.

He said permissions for such trips are not given during March, April and May, as the high forest ranges are dry with the possibility of forest fires spreading fast.

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State health secretary J.Radhakrishnan told newsmen after inspecting the facilities being given for the burn victims at GRH that efforts were on to save the lives of trekkers, who have been admitted with severe burn injuries.

The Indian Air Force (IAF) was pressed into action by Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman after reports of the forest fire surfaced on Sunday. The department noted that several forest areas in the state are prone to forest fires and multiple fires have already been reported in several areas including Kodagu and Chikkamagaluru already this year. There was no doctor in the group comprising women and children, who are not used to strenuous physical activity. Speaking to reporters, Palaniswami said the trekking expedition had been done without getting the necessary permission from the Forest Department.

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Nine people were killed in a forest fire in southern India after becoming trapped while hiking, police said Monday. It returned to Sulur Air Base on completing the task. Any trek organised by the club undergoes multiple approvals, while the participants "are carefully selected and disclaimers are obtained from" all of them.

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