The Jakarta Post
The Environment and Forestry Ministry sealed land owned by five holders of plantation concessions in Kubu Raya, West Kalimantan over the weekend after authorities discovered fires in the areas.
The five companies were identified only by their initials: PT SUM, PT PLD, PT AAN, PT APL and PT RJP.
"The move is aimed at creating a deterrent effect,” Rasio Ridho Sani, the ministry's law enforcement director general who led the operation in Kubu Raya, said in a press statement on Sunday. "The government is serious in handling [forest fire] cases.”
"We will continue to monitor other locations, including by using satellite and drones," he added.
Rasio said that his office was considering levying both administrative punishments and civil and criminal charges on anyone responsible for causing forest fires in the province.
The police have named 26 individuals as suspects for allegedly burning forest across West Kalimantan. As of Friday, investigators had arrested 14 of the suspects.
Data by the National Disaster Mitigation Agency (BNPB) showed that the number of hot spots in West Kalimantan had decreased from 885 on Thursday to 38 on Sunday morning.
A team comprising more than 2,300 personnel from the Military, police, government ministries and local administrations have been working to extinguish fires across the province, BNPB spokesman Sutopo Purwo Nugroho said. (sau/ipa)