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ED Raids Locations Tied to Congress Leader in Forest Scam Case

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The Enforcement Directorate is currently conducting raids at multiple locations in Delhi, Chandigarh, and Uttarakhand as part of an investigation into an alleged forest scam case involving former Uttarakhand Minister Harak Singh Rawat, reports news agency ANI, citing sources. During Rawat’s tenure as the state forest minister in the BJP Government, he and some of his departmental officers faced serious allegations regarding their involvement in illegal tree cutting and construction within the Pakhro range of Corbett Park under the Tiger Safari Project.

According to a report by the Forest Survey of India (FSI), over 6,000 trees were reportedly illegally felled in the Corbett Tiger Reserve (CTR), exceeding the permitted 163 for the Pakhru tiger safari. However, the state forest department contested the FSI’s findings, stating that there were technical issues that needed to be addressed before fully accepting the report.

This isn’t the first instance of properties associated with Rawat drawing scrutiny from ED officials. Previously, the Uttarakhand Vigilance Team had conducted raids on an institute in Dehradun’s Shankarpur and a petrol pump in Chhiddarwala linked to him.

Rawat began his political career with the BJP in undivided Uttar Pradesh, later joining the BSP in 1996, only to leave two years later and join the Congress. After an 18-year tenure with the Congress, he parted ways with the Harish Rawat-led government to join the BJP in 2016. However, he was expelled from the BJP in 2022 after reportedly demanding party tickets for himself and his daughter-in-law for the assembly polls.

The Enforcement Directorate is currently conducting raids at multiple locations in Delhi, Chandigarh, and Uttarakhand as part of an investigation into an alleged forest scam case involving former Uttarakhand Minister Harak Singh Rawat, reports news agency ANI, citing sources. During Rawat’s tenure as the state forest minister in the BJP Government, he and some of his departmental officers faced serious allegations regarding their involvement in illegal tree cutting and construction within the Pakhro range of Corbett Park under the Tiger Safari Project.

According to a report by the Forest Survey of India (FSI), over 6,000 trees were reportedly illegally felled in the Corbett Tiger Reserve (CTR), exceeding the permitted 163 for the Pakhru tiger safari. However, the state forest department contested the FSI’s findings, stating that there were technical issues that needed to be addressed before fully accepting the report.

This isn’t the first instance of properties associated with Rawat drawing scrutiny from ED officials. Previously, the Uttarakhand Vigilance Team had conducted raids on an institute in Dehradun’s Shankarpur and a petrol pump in Chhiddarwala linked to him.

Rawat began his political career with the BJP in undivided Uttar Pradesh, later joining the BSP in 1996, only to leave two years later and join the Congress. After an 18-year tenure with the Congress, he parted ways with the Harish Rawat-led government to join the BJP in 2016. However, he was expelled from the BJP in 2022 after reportedly demanding party tickets for himself and his daughter-in-law for the assembly polls.

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