Virdi (Goa-Mah-Karna border) (PTI): Right under the nose of three state governments — Goa, Maharashtra and Karnataka — world’s one of the richest bio-diversity hotspot is fearing to lose its glory due to massive deforestation. Environmentalists say that this thick forest in the Sahyadri range, which is also home to several wildlife, has already lost two acres of its forest to timber mafia and instances of forest fire.
However, with a view to protect the forest, they have also held several round of talks with the villagers of Virdi, which has a cluster of 2,000 population in Maharashtra. “There is a need of a combined effort to curb such mass scale deforestation in important areas of biodiversity richness, but being private areas owned by villagers and given the political or social influence, authorities can do little, especially in a state like Maharashtra, whose entire Western Ghats have under pressure for years and continue to reel under the demons of rapid industrialisation and urban development,” said state’s renowned environmentalist Nirmal Kulkarni.
Besides, it is also found that the trees are cut just next to the village in the thick forest in the Karnataka jurisdiction. Goa’s state tree Mhadad (terminillia grenalata) is also found in this stretch and is being robbed away by timber lobby. Other tree species like Kinnal (terminillia panigulata) are also facing the wrath, the environmentalists say.