CANACONA: A huge fire broke out on the Chapolim hillock (Korpar) behind the residential locality of Nagarcem on Sunday night.
It was past 8 pm Sunday night, and some motorists in Nagorcem noticed glimpses of fire emanating in the forest covers on the eastern side of the road.
The fire soon became enormous as concerned people informed the Fire- Services personnel of the impending danger.
Incidentally, the fire could be seen, and huge flames going up the sky were noticed on the Chapoli hillock, which mostly has forest cover consisting of Forest Bamboo (Kolki), and the forest cover is also called Korpa-Dongor. The hillock is situated beyond the Nagorcem residential locality and behind the residential complex, Bharat Heights’.
Due to the tall forest bamboo, the fire flames could be noticed flying high and wide, making environmentalists worried about biodiversity safety. It is believed that the forest cover has a presence of rich biodiversity, as well as it is the home to various wildlife species.
With no possibility of a Fire –Tender (which was brought and kept ready on the nearby road) reaching the site, once the fire subsided a bit past midnight, fire- personnel and others reached the site foot and finally succeeded in bringing the fire under control.
‘There is no more danger now. Our personnel came back by 3 am early mo9nding morning only after extinguishing the fire’, a fire official informed in the morning.
On learning about the fire, members of the Shristhal Bio-diversity Management Committee, including Chairman Vinay Tubki, Shirish Pai, and Tejas Naikgaonkar, amongst others, immediately rushed to the site, saw the serious condition and also contacted the Forest Department Officials for joint inspection and action to control the fire.
According to Forest officials, most of the forest bamboo (kolki) ha candles have been burnt, and it is very difficult and next to impossible for humans to approach the site, let alone a fire brigade vehicle, to reach there. Forest has already taken up steps to dig a ring around to try and prevent the fire from spreading further.
Incidentally, a Fire-Tender was brought and kept on the NH-66 road; when asked if there was no possibility of pressing a helicopter o to douse the fire, a fire official informed Canaocna Fire Station do not have access to Helicopter services, but the Forest Department has.
The fires escalated and reached newer areas between 11 and 11:30 pm, luckily only to subside by itself after midnight, enabling the fire personnel to walk to the mountain and bring the fire under control using plant branches.
The Shristhal BMC then also contacted the Biodiversity Board Chairman, Dr Sarmokadam and informed them of the incident. Dr Sarmokadam is learnt to have contacted senior officials and also informed that Deputy Forest Ranger has taken tactical notice and is supervising the work.
Forest department personnel are working at a fast pace while a fire brigade vehicle has been brought to the road leading to Chapoli.