It is learnt that 11 Divisional Secretariats in the Monaragala district have given permission to cut those trees to be sold as timber and as well as for individuals to build houses.
Besides, a large number of big trees have been cut down without permission. Officials say trees in forest reserves too are very often fallen down by tree smugglers.
Although trees are cut down at an alarming rate, tree planting takes place in very small manner and the ensuing situation would lead to severe drinking water crisis in the Monaragala district very soon, says Chandama Lokuhewage, the additional district secretary of Monaragala.
Most of the cut down trees have been taken out from the district. Highest number of trees have been fallen down in Siyambalanduwa, Monaragala, Wallawaya, Bibila, Madagama and Badalkumbura.
In kegalles also, 1610 permits have been issued to cut jack trees in January and February.
Highest number of jack trees have fallen down in Warakapola divisional secretariat.Separately, it was revealed that three old Kumbuk trees have been cut down by an unidentified group in the Flood Plain valley in Polonnaruwa.Farmers in the area say although they have been farming in the areas for well over 100 years, now they are being removed from those areas.
On the other hand, they say outsiders cut down valuable trees in the areas.
Meanwhile, Plantation Minister Ramesh Pathirana said steps will be taken immediately to limit the cutting down of coconut trees.Coconut trees are mostly cut down when lands are fragmented by land sales companies.