Minister to visit Tirupati to monitor forest fire

Forest Minister S Vijayrama Raju today said he would personally visit Tirupati to enquire about the fire in Seshachalam Forests in Tirumala Hills that occurred on Wednesday last. Talking to reporters at the State Secretariat, the Forest Minister said the forests in Tirupati catch fire almost every summer as a specific grass in the forests was primarily responsible for the fire.

However, he said he would personally monitor the probe that has been ordered into the fire incident. He said some wild animals were feared killed in the forests. However, he said he could neither confirm nor deny the reports and would be able to make a statement only after visiting Tirupati. It may be mentioned that a minor fire broke out on Wednesday night near the Elephant Arch and Narasimha Swamy Temple on the ghat road that winds down to Tirupati.

It spread rapidly to engulf nearly 500 acres of Seshachalam Forest land in the area.

Forest fires are common in Tirumala and several acres of forest is lost every year on account of it.