Kagaznagar Forest Range Officer (FRO) Ch Anitha has been selected for the prestigious KVS Babu IFS Memorial Gold Medal and a citation in recognition of her outstanding services to the Forest Department.

Anitha made headlines after a mob assaulted her at Kotha Sarsala village for carrying out plantation activity in a 20 hectare degraded land on June 30.

Kagaznagar Forest Divisional Officer M Raja Ramana Reddy said Anitha was nominated for the award for rendering outstanding services to protect the forest, braving all odds. She will be presented with Rs 15,000 and a citation. Anitha will receive the award at a function to be held in Hyderabad on Independence Day, he said.

“During her tenure in Kagaznagar range from June 30, 2018, to June 30, 2019, she faced major challenges in protecting the forest, curbing illegal encroachments, poaching and controlling timber smuggling. Due to her good efforts during the short span, Anitha could control most of the illegal activities,” the nomination read.

Anitha sustained injuries on her hand and head in the gruesome attack by the mob for attempting to plant saplings on the land as part of compensatory afforestation plantation for losing forest lands under Kaleshwaram project. But, she resumed duty at the same range after recovering from the wounds. She was hailed for her bravery and enduring physical attack in conserving forests.

“I am so happy to be selected for the award. The honor is in recognition of the services I have been rendering for the last six years. It has increased my responsibility to protect the wild. It is an achievement of the entire department. I thank my family for their unwavering support and encouragement of FDO Ramana Reddy and other officials,” Anitha told.

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