It’s not that you encounter these Red Sandalwood trees in every forest in India. Unfortunately they are rare and endangered!
It’s not that you encounter incidents of illegal trade of wood of any other tree. Unfortunately red sandalwood is in demand and valuable!
It’s not daily you see smugglers looking for wood anywhere else. Unfortunately it happens in case of Red Sandalwood.
It’s not daily you encounter so many people become millionaires illegally selling wood. It happens in case of Sandalwood!
It’s not an encounter so many smugglers out there looking for this wood and government appointing a special task force to protect this wood. It happens in Andhra Pradesh!
And it’s not a daily encounter when 25 sandalwood smugglers were killed in an encounter with police. What happened in Seshachalam forest is sad considering 25 people were killed. There are voices saying Guns should not have been used, the smugglers should have been arrested.
There Human Rights commission out there asking questions. There are Tamil Nadu politicians asking for thorough inquiry knowing there wont be one. And then there is AP government defending the killings.
Rather trying to find out what really happened, which anyway will not come out or blaming the police,
Tamil Nadu Government on its part should see
1. why the youth had to tread on this illegal path.
2. Why these youth cannot be provided more job opportunities rather falling prey to illegal activities.
3. How future generations can be stopped from committing the same mistake of crossing the border for wood.
AP government should
1. Reign the big hands behind the smugglers. Or they will find more hungry mouths to enter the forest for wood.
2. Ask the special task force to act with restraint.
Lets stop all this fight as it will not get the dead back or avoid future encounters.