Siddipet: Using CCTV footage, officials on Friday tracked a private bus driver who had damaged a Haritha Haram tree and was asked to pay a fine of Rs. 15,000. The driver, identified as Satya Narayan, hit a tree causing it to topple over near Sivanubhava Mandapam bus stand at midnight.

Since the incident occured at night the driver fled the spot unnoticed. Locals saw the damaged tree in the morning and informed the Haritha Haram officials.

The officials went through the CCTV footage and found that a private bus (TS15UB1328) had hit the tree. The driver was later traced using the vehicle number and was called upon by Haritha Harama officer of Siddipet Samalla Illaya. Satya Narayan appeared in front of Illaya on Friday and was asked to pay a fine of Rs. 15,000 by the Siddipet municipal commissioner.

Illaya said, “We are in the process of converting Siddipet into green Siddipet so strict action will be taken against anyone who is involved in felling of trees or damaging them.” Municipal authorities of Siddipet also pointed out that every month the state government allots Rs. 1 lakh for maintenance of trees planted under the Haritha Haram Initiative.

Haritha Haram is a large scale tree plantation programme launched by the Telangana government in 2015. It aims to increase green cover in Telangana from 24 per cent to 33 per cent. Last year in December, Siddipet Haritha Haram officials had fined a private car. Rs.9,500 for hitting and uprooting a tree near Siddipet Government Medical college.

Aiswarya Sriram

Aiswarya Sriram is a budding multimedia journalist and is currently working for NewsMeter as a "Factcheck Freelancer". A graduate from Indian Institute of Journalism and New Media (IIJNM) Bangalore, Aiswarya has earlier worked with The Logical Indian and has interned with Republic TV. Aiswarya, a Tamilian who was born and brought up in Mumbai, loves to do rural reporting. She has visited Byadgi Taluk of Karnataka, to write about the issues faced by chilli factory workers there, earlier in 2019. A craft enthusiast, Aiswarya also does quilling, painting and glass work. On her off-days, she loves to read crime-thrillers and watch anime. She primarily reports on civic issues, GHMC, human-interesting features, and fact-checking video stories.

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