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Slain forest officer's family waits for justice

Karwar, Jan 31, 2013, DHNS: 0:46 IST

Officer paid with his life while trying to prevent tourists from feeding crocodiles

ACF Madan Nayak and his wife Sumathi.

It’s been eight months since Madan Nayak, the Assistant Conservator of Forests (ACF) of the Dandeli Wildlife Division, was allegedly murdered by a group of tourists near the crocodile park at Dandeli in the district. But justice still eludes the family of the slain forest officer, even as the accused are out on bail.

Sumathi, Nayak’s wife, says that the least they expect is that the perpetrators of the crime are brought to book. They have also given up hope on promises made to give Nayak’s daughter, Megha, a job as an ACF or as a Range Forest Officer.

The officer’s wife says that Forest Minister C P Yogeeshwara had visited them soon after the murder to offer condolences. It was then that he had promised to place the issue of providing Megha a job before Cabinet for approval. “But the promise has not moved forward,” Sumathi said.

“Is this the way they honour an honest officer?” she demanded.

Several trips to the offices of the chief minister, the district incharge Minister Vishveshwara Hegde Kageri and the forest minister have proved futile, she said. “They promised to take up the issue at the Cabinet meeting, but seem to have forgotten about it.”

Her request to name a place after Madan Nayak has also not been considered.

Sumathi has threatened to launch an agitation if the murderers are not punished. She also wants action taken against Dandeli Deputy Superintendent of Police Sara Fatima, Police Inspector Vidyadhar Baikeriker and Sub Inspector Praveen Neelammanavar, who she says are also responsible for the murder.

She had demanded that the caste abuse case registered against her, Megha and the couple’s son Shishir, by the miscreants on the day of the incident be withdrawn. “This has not happened,” said a relative.

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