A special unit has been formed comprising of STF personnel and Police Environmental Unit to take immediate action against deforestation, the Public Security Minister Rear Admiral (Rtd) Sarath Weerasekera said.
Those who are indulging in deforestation, poaching and causing destruction to environmental activities will be caught by the police and punished severely.
To provide any alert to the STF on these illegal activities, the emergency phone number 1997 is active all the time to apprehend the culprits, he said.
He said the new unit will act swiftly on any alert by general public with regards to environmental destruction, including deforestation.
He also said that a system has been established to punish the wrongdoers.
"Destroying the environment means destroying the nation. It is also about depriving our country of the future generations.
Therefore, the President has focused his attention on this matter and with proper understanding,b he had instructed me to take action," he said.
The minister said that he solicit the help of the people and requested the public provide information about those who are involved in such criminal activities. "We will deploy security personnel at pivotal places to arrest the criminals," he said.