Manipur chief minister N Biren Singh on Thursday took to Twitter to appeal for help as the razing wild forest fire at the Dzukou Valley reached Mount AsIi, the highest peak of Manipur.
According to sources, the wild forest fire in the Dzukou Valley started about two to three days ago.
“(Dzukou FIRE) It has already crossed Mount AsIi the highest peak of Manipur. If the wind direction going to the southern side, There is a high possibility of entering in the thickest forest call Koziirii in Manipur. Need help,” tweeted N Biren Singh.
The chief minister in an earlier tweet had said that the fire might have started on the Nagaland side of the valley and reached the Manipur side.
“Wildfire at Dzuko valley Officials and villagers could not enter the burning areas as the scale of fire is too large with strong winds and there is no proper equipment it may be difficult to control by manpower. The grasses are dry, More manpower are sending with equipment,” the chief minister tweeted on Wednesday.
The Dzukou Valley located on the Manipur-Nagaland border is a favoured trekking destination and home to a rich variety of plants and animals
The valley is also home to the endangered Blyth’s tragopan, Nagaland’s state bird.
Among the different varieties of seasonal flowers that bloom in the valley, the Dzuko lily is notable as it is found only in this valley.
Although forest officials and locals from neighbouring villages tried to enter the Dzuko valley, they had to return because of the fast spreading fire.
Strong winds and the dry surroundings seemed to have aided in spreading of the fire.
Officials of the Nagaland State Disaster Management Authority said that the cause and extent of damage caused by the fire are yet to be ascertained.
Meanwhile, the Indian Air Force (AIR) extended its support in fighting the wildfire in the Dzukou Valley.
AIR has deployed a Mi-17V5 helicopter equipped with Bambi Bucket for fire-fighting, in the valley.