Another fire broke out at Abdullah Shila in Chandpai range of the Sundarbans in Sharankhola upazila on Monday morning, endangering its ecosystem.This is the third incident of forest fire in Chandpai range over the last three weeks.
“The fire originated at Abdullah Shila adjacent to Nangli camp around 11am,” said M Saidul Islam, divisional forest officer of Sundarbans East Zone.
Moralganj Fire Station Officer Swapan Kumar Bhakta said they managed to extinguish the fire around 5 pm but the damage caused by the fire could not be ascertained yet
Sultan Mahmud, Dhanshagor Station officer of the Sundarbans, said he saw smoke billowing out of the forest in Abdullah Shila under Nangli camp while patrolling in the area.
When they reached the spot, they saw some people fleeing into the deep of the forest, he said.
The Forest Department formed a three-member committee, headed by assistant forest conservator (Chandpai Range) Belayet Hossain, to investigate the fire incident.
The other members of the committee are Dhansagar Station officer Sultan Mahmud and Chandpai Station officer Gazi Motier Rahman.
The committee has been asked to submit its report within seven days.
Zahir Uddin Ahmed, forest conservator of Khulna region, said miscreants set the fire intentionally.
Divisional forest officer of the Sundarbans East Zone Md Saidul Islam said miscreants might have set fire in the area for sabotage following the arrest warrants issued against six fishermen.
A Bagerhat court on Sunday issued separate warrants for the arrest of six accused in a case filed over the forest fire that burnt around 8.5 acres of forestry in Abdullah Shilla in Chandpai range of the Sundarbans that originated from a point at Nangli camp around 10am on April 13.
On March 27, another fire broke out in the Dhanshagor station’s Nangli forest camp area.
In the last 14 years, there have been 20 fire incidents in Chandpai and Sharankhola ranges of the Sundarbans.
According to experts, repeated forest fires affect the quality of top soil ultimately putting the ecosystem at stake.