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Lakhimpur district administration on Saturday carried out a massive eviction drive in Kakoi reserve forest.
A top district administration official said that 18 houses were dismantled, clearing a few bighas of forestland.
“Around 300 people were affected. The drive will continue till the entire forest is cleared of encroachments,” added the official.
Police and Lakhimpur district administration assisted the forest department in the eviction drive.
The encroachers had escaped from the area before the administration launched the eviction drive.
This is the third reserve forest after Kaziranga National Park and Amchang reserve forest where eviction drives were carried out in the state.
In Kaziranga , eviction was carried out in September last year following a Gauhati High Court order. Two persons were killed and 17 injured, including 15 policemen, during the Kaziranga drive.
Similarly, Dispur carried out an eviction drive in Amchang reserve forest in Guwahati in August this year, following a Gauhati High Court order.
Of the 23,424 lakh hectares of reserve forest area in the State, 2,764 lakh hectares had been encroached upon, according to official figures.
A large part of the 10 reserve forests around Guwahati has for long been subjected to encroachment.
Encroach-ment of forest land had begun soon after Independence in the districts of Kamrup, Kokrajhar, Sivasagar, Golaghat, Lakhimpur, Nagaon and Darrang, said a forest department official.