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Nagaland’s pristine Dzukou Valley is burning, efforts on to control forest fire: All you need to know

Wildfires continues to rage on in the picturesque Dzukou Valley along the Nagaland-Manipur since last Tuesday (December 29) afternoon. Indian Air Force, NDRF and local authorities battling day and night to control the forest fire.

The chief minister of Nagaland, Neiphiu Rio has today taken an aerial survey of Dzukou Valley to take stock of the fire situation that continues to rage on in the picturesque Dzukou Valley along the Nagaland-Manipur border since last Tuesday (December 29) afternoon.

Officials had on Saturday informed that the massive wildfire in the famed Dzukou valley had been brought under control due the untiring efforts of a team of National Disaster Response Force (NDRF), Indian Air Force helicopters, police, forest department and local volunteers.

Videos shared by the ministry of defence on Sunday had showed four Mi-17V5 Indian Air Force (IAF) helicopters participating in firefighting operations to douse the forest fire. The videos shows a chopper refilling a Bambi bucket which has an approximate capacity of 3500 litres and then proceeding towards the forest fire.

While IAF choppers were used to douse the fire in the valley, SDO (Civil) Jakhama, SDPO South and Range Forest Officer, Kohima had coordinated the ground operations to extinguish the fire. To maintain seamless communication with the ground operation team, Kohima Police has set up a control room at Dzukou entry point at Viswema village and two relay stations also set up in the Dzukou base camp.

Last week, it was reported that the fire which was raging on Nagaland side till Wednesday had spread to the Manipur hillside.

On Friday Manipur Chief Minister N Biren Singh thanked Union Home Minister Amit Shah for the prompt intervention. “Just received a call from Union Home Minister @AmitShah Ji to assess and discuss the situation about the wildfire at Dzuko valley. Amit Shah Ji has assured all the necessary assistance from the Home Ministry to contain the situation at earliest,” Singh tweeted.

Dzukou Valley, about 30 km from Nagaland’s capital Kohima, is a popular trekking destination known for its flora and fauna. It is also home to the endangered Blyth’s tragopan — Nagaland’s state bird. The valley is famous for the Dzukou Lily which is found only in this valley.

Officials have not been able to pinpoint the reason for the fire but said it may have been the result of trekkers or campers leaving their resting site without extinguishing their campfire.

“However, as it is a dry season, the fire might have been caused by friction,” Nagaland State Disaster Management Authority’s Officer on Special Duty, Johnny Ruangmei, said, adding that the place is a tourist spot and reason for the fire is not ascertained yet.

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OpIndia Staff
Staff reporter at OpIndia

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