Image Source: Telangana Today

Telangana: Forest Ranger Abdul Rahman destroys Dwaja Sthambh; Angry Vanavasis attacked Forest Office

New Delhi: The incident of destroying a holy Dwaja Sthambha belonging to the Vanavasis (Tribals) by forest ranger Bhaskar Goud alias Abdul Rahman has triggered tension in the agency village of Telangana.

On 30 March, a day after Sri Ramnavami, the Vanvaasi of Gummadiwali village in Aswaraopet Mandal of Bhadradri Kothagudem district prepared to place a new Dhwaj Stambh made up of a Neem tree’s trunk in Ganganama temple as per their age-old indigenous tradition. These Vanavasis brought the tree trunk from the nearby forest by taking prior permission from forest officials. While they were preparing to erect in front of the temple as ‘Dwaja Sthambha’, suddenly forest officials headed by ranger Mr. Abdul Rahman reached the temple, cut down the holy Dhwaj Stambh, and crushed it into pieces, ignoring the pleas of locals.

The news of the destruction of Dwaja Sthambha spread like wildfire in the district. The angry tribals of the local villages gathered in heavy numbers and rushed to the divisional forest office, demanding justice and immediate suspension of forest ranger Abdul Rahman for insulting their sentiments and indigenous traditions. The angry tribals were pacified with the assurance from the local police officers and politicians to arrange a new tree trunk and an apology from Abdul Rahman.

Locals say that the forest ranger recently converted to Islam from Hinduism and attributed a ‘Religious Angle’ to his action.

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