Jaipur: A crowd of villagers manhandled senior forest department officers and damaged their vehicles by hurling stones at them in Sariska tiger reserve on Saturday. The officials including chief conservator of forest Arvindam Tomar had gathered to participate in a wildlife seminar. They were at Daivari outpost when the crowd of villagers ambushed them.
According to preliminary reports, the villagers reacted to the rumours that the forest officials had gathered to initiate relocation of villagers from Sariska; the officials however denied the reports. Some officials said that no incident of manhandling happened, but didn’t deny the reports of the villagers damaging vehicles.
“The officials had gathered to attend a seminar. The villagers thought that they were there to seize their cattle and woods and also displace them from their villages. No such thing was planned. We are investigating how these rumours spread,” said a senior district administration officer.
After the reports of the villagers manhandling officials, senior local administration and police officials including Bansur SDM and local SHO rushed to the spot. Police force as also deployed. The forest department officials were escorted out of the area unharmed.
The seminar was to take place in Alwar, but the senior officials decided to visit Sariska when the incident happened.