Belthangady: 4,800 hectares of forest lost as fire rages through Shishila and Shibaje

08:54 AM Mar 10, 2023 | Team Udayavani |

The massive forest fire has already burned around 4,800 hectares of forest in the Shishila and Shibaje enclaves of Belthangady, Karnataka.


A local team of 50 people, including the Uppinangady forest department team, has been working tirelessly to extinguish the fire for a week. However, it has not yet been fully extinguished, and firefighters continue to work to bring it under control.

The fire was first noticed in the Miyaru reserve forest area of Shishila and Shibaje, and later reached the Balur area of Chikkamagaluru due to winds and extreme heat.

The fire has caused extensive damage to the forests, including Amedikallu, Singani Gudde, and Udaya Parvata of the Shishila range. Thick smoke has covered the forest near Peradelu of Hatyadka village even on Thursday, and there have been reports of trees falling and drying up, which are causing the fire to spread further.

Eyewitnesses have also reported a large-scale fire in the Malla area of Didupe in Belthangadi taluk. There have been cases of fire in Patla, Kataje, and the Charmadi-Kanapadi reserve forest of Neriya village. Additionally, there have been reports of fires in Banjaru Male and some other places in Neriya’s environment.


There are rumors that the forest fire was started deliberately to drive elephants away from the cultivated fields. However, there is no concrete evidence to support this claim.

Locals have come together to help put out the fire, and the fire engulfing the mobile tower near Perla was reportedly extinguished with the cooperation of the people.


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