Bandipora: A forest employee was critically injured and four others received minor injuries during a firefighting operation in Khuihama forests of Bandipora.
According to the officials, the fire has engulfed 18-20 patches of 108 compartment of forests and is giving the making it difficult for the forest department to douse off the fire.
Locals have also joined hands with the forest department to doze off the fire, the official said.
Divisional forest officer Ab. Hamid Malla told Kashmir Reader that an employee, Abdul Rashid received critical injuries last night while dozing off the flames. He said that several other employees have also received minor injuries.
According to the official, the fire is in the dense forest belt and endangering a vast area of green gold.
The officer added that they are trying their best to save the trees from getting engulfed as of now only grass and bushes and dried trees were caught up in the fire.
An official said Kashmir is under the grip of a dry spell with snow and rain giving a miss this winter in plains and hence forest fires are common this time owing to extreme dryness. Officer also said that the locals were also involved in acts of burning dried grass and trees which would go uncontrolled due to dry spell hence causing forest fires.
Pertinently to mention that only a week before a huge fire erupted in compartment No 110 in Madar and Konan area falling under Khuihama forest range of Bandipora.