Ukhrul: Manipur’s famous Shirui Peak in Ukhrul district, where a massive forest fire broke out on Friday afternoon, has been reportedly brought under control with the joint efforts of district administration, police personnel, forest officials, firefighters and locals, said officials.
According to official sources, the team led by additional deputy commissioner, Dipu Gangmei, along with Ukhrul additional superintendent of police reached the spot around 8 pm to control the blaze.
Altogether 56 to 60 people, including locals, engaged and finally brought the fire under control around 10:30 pm. However, the amount of damage and the cause of the fire are yet to be ascertained till the time of filing this report.
Shirui Peak, which is home to the endangered Shirui Lily, the state flower, and a popular tourist spot in the hill district, is known for its scenic beauty and rich fauna and flora.
As per reports, the fire which likely started around 1 pm on Friday afternoon engulfed the entire peak before it was finally brought under control.
When inquired about the fire incident, Shirui villagers said they were clueless about the cause of the event. As per a picture, which was captured from the district headquarters, a peak was seen half burnt. The intensity of the fire was such that the massive fire could also be seen from Ukhrul town.
Following the movement initiated by the villagers under the name of Shirui Kashong Area Forest Land Owner Conservancy (SKAFLOC) in 2017 to protect and preserve the Shirui Peak, the villagers resolved not to take up any activity that could causes fire. As per resolution, not a single fire incident has been reported from the peak till date.
Ukhrul district was the most affected district by forest fire in Manipur with 1,399 forest fire cases registered during 2018-19.
People in the region use fire to burn forest wastes for farming purposes which often causes fire during the dry season. Forest fires remain a serious threat to forest resources and wetlands.
Creation of fire-lines, control of burning and public awareness on forest fire management with community participation is the need of the hour to mitigate the increasing forest fire incidents caused by humans.
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