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Thane Forest Circle

 

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Felling Permisions


 

I)                     I am a non-tribal person.  I want to fell and sell the trees in my land. To who should I approach?

Ans :       The felling and disposal of trees in private lands belonging to a non-tribal is governed by the Maharashtra Felling of Trees (Regulation) Act 1964.  The objective of this Act is to regulate felling on private lands in rural areas in the interest of soil and moisture conservation.  As per the provisions of Section 3 of this Act, you have to approach the local tree officer i.e. Range Forest Officer for getting his felling permission.  But for a tree in urban area, the local municipal authorities have to be approached.

II)                   What is the procedure and how much time does it take to get the felling permission?

Ans :       The application has to apply for felling of trees, in prescribed form to the tree officer along with various enclosures.  These enclosures are mainly pertaining to the ownership of the land and the right on the trees.
The tree officer is bound to inform the applicants about his decision of granting the felling permission or rejection within sixty days from the receipt of the application for felling of trees.  Otherwise the applicant can fell the trees as if the permission has been granted.

III)                  Does every species of trees require permission and how to remove the trees after felling is completed?

Ans :       As per the section 2 (F) of the above Act, there are 16 scheduled trees which require felling permission from the tree officer of the forest department.  These are-

          Terminalia chebula (Hirda)

          Teak

          Madhuca latifolia (Mahua, Mhowa on Moha)

          Tamarindus indica (Tamarind, Chinch on Imli)

          Mangifera indica (Mango)

          Artocarpus integrifolia (Jackfruit)

          Acacia catechu (Khair)

          Santalum album (Sandal)

          Pterocarpus marsupium (bija)

          Adina cordofolia (Haldu)

          Ooginia dalbergoidies (Tiwas)

          Terminalia tomentosa (Ain)

          Terminalia paniculata (Kinjal on Kindal)

          Hardwickia binata (Anjan)

          Syzigium cumini (Jambul)

          Mangrove

In the district of Sindhudarg, in addition to above, following trees also require the felling permission.

          Dalbergia latifolia (Shisam)

          Gmelina arboria (Shivan)

          Lagerstroemia lanceolata (Nana)

          Terminalia belerica (Behada)

          Strychnos nuxvomica (Kazra)

          Euginia zeylanica (Bhedus)

          Terminalia arjuna (Pandhra ain)

          Anacardium occidentale (Kajoo)

For trees other than above, no objection under section 25 of the Maharashtra land Revenue Code, from revenue authorities is to be obtained.  For the transport permission for both the scheduled and the non-scheduled trees the transit pass as per Bombay Forest Rules, 1942, Rules no.66, should be obtained from the concerned Deputy Conservator of Forests.

IV)                 If the tree officer has denied the felling permission then whom to approach?

Ans :The appellate authority over the decision of the tree officer is District Collector as per section 3 (2) of the Maharashtra Felling of Trees (Regulation) Act, 1964. 













 

Transit Pass


I)                     How to transport any legal forests produce?

Ans :       Transportation of any forest produce requires a transit pass from officer or person duly authorised under rule 67 of the Bombay Forest Rules, 1942.  However,   the following trees have been exempted by the State Government.
1)       Nilgiri (Eucalyptus sp.) {vide notification dt. 5th March 1990} 

2) Babul (Acacia nilotica) 3) Subabul  (Leucaena leucocephala) 4) Prosopis (Prosopis juliflora) {vide notification dt. 21st  June 1990} 

5) Ashok (Polyalthia longifolia)   6) Drumstick (Moringa oleifera) 7) Sindi (Phoenix sylvestris) 8) Orange (Citrus aurantiun) 9) Chickoo (Achras zapota) 10) Bhendi (Thespesia popullea) 11) Acacia (Acacia mangium) 12) Poplar (Populus) {vide notification dt. 23rd October 1997}

(For details please refer to rule 66 of the  Bombay Forest Rules, 1942)

II)                   I am a tribal and want to fell and sell the trees in my land.  Whom shall I approach?

Ans :       A special Act has been enacted for protecting the interest of the tribal people and to discourage the middlemen.  The Act is known as Maharashtra Sale of Trees by Occupants belonging to Scheduled Tribes (Regulation) Act, 1969.  As per section 6 of this act, tribal can approach the concerned Dy. Conservator of Forests for disposal of trees on their field.  However, before the sale of trees, the felling permission should be obtained from the tree officer.

III)                  What is the procedure for disposal of trees and terms of payments to the concerned tribal?

Ans :       The trees permitted to be felled by the tree officer are felled, transported to the Government timber deport and open auction is held in the presence of that tribal occupant.  There is provision of advance payment to the tribal.  Within 30 days of the decision for assistance to harvest the trees, the Dy. Conservator of Forests makes the advance payment of 20% of the estimated value of material.  Within 30 days of receipt of the felled material at the Government deport, IInd installment of 30% is paid to the tribal.  After deducting the expenditure incurred by the Government, the remaining balance is paid to the tribal within 120 days from the receipt of the material at sale-depot.


 

 

 

Punishable Offences


 

I)                     What are the Acts prohibited in the forests?

Ans : Under Indian Forest Act, 1927 section 26 (1) the, kindling in or setting fire, trespassing and pasturing of cattle, felling or damage to the trees, quarrying stone or removing any forest produce, encroachment and poaching are the main acts prohibited in the reserved forests.  Similar activities are prohibited in the protected forest if a notification under section 30 or Rules made under section 32 are contravened.

II)                   What is the punishment for the prohibited acts?

Ans :       As per section 26 (1) and section 33 (1) of the Indian Forest Act 1927, the prohibited acts are punishable with imprisonment for a term which may extend to 1 year or with fine which may extend to Rs.2000/-, or with both, in addition to the compensation for damage done to the forests.  In addition the tolls, vehicles used in committing such offences are liable to seizure and may be confiscated.

III)                  Whether a forest officer has the powers to arrest the offender?

Ans : Under section 64 (1) of Indian Forest Act 1927, any forest officer, police officer or revenue officer may without orders form a Magistrate and without a warrant, arrest any person against whom reasonable suspicion exists of his being involved in a forest offence.  Under section 65 Of Indian Forest Act any forest officer of the rank of Range Forest Officer and upwards, police officer of the rank of sub Inspector and upwards or any Revenue Officer of the rank of Tahasildar and upwards may release such person on his executing a bond.

IV)                 Do the forest offenders have to be compulsorily prosecuted?

Ans : Although the majority of the forest offences are non bailable as per section 64 A, there are provisions of summary trial under section 67 in the court of Judicial Magistrate (Ist class) as well as the compounding of offences under section 68.  At present the Forest officers of the rank of Conservator of Forests, Dy. Conservator of Forests and Assistant Conservator of Forests are empowered to accept from an offender, the payment of a sum of money by way of compensation for the damage and compound the offence.

V)                  What are the duties of a common man in preventing the forest offences?

Ans : Under Section 79 of Indian Forest Act 1927, every person who exercises any right in the forests, or who has been permitted to take any forest produce or to pasture cattle in such forests or every person in any village contiguous to forests who is employed by the Government or who receives emoluments from the Government is bound to assist forest/police officers for preventing of forest offences.

VI)                 Whether anything produced or found in the forests is forest produce?

Ans : Under section 2(4) everything when found in or brought from forest is a forest produce.  But there are several items which are forest produce irrespective of the fact whether these are found in forest or not.  These include – timber, charcoal, caoutchouc, catechu, wood-oil, resin, natural varnish bark, lac, mahua seeds, kuth, apta and tembhurni leaves, rosha grass including oil derived therefrom, Rauwolfia serpenditina and myrabolams.

Note : For details,  the Indian Forest Act 1927 should be consulted.

 
 
 
 
 

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