Three notorious poachers have been nabbed in Dudhwa Tiger Reserve in Uttar Pradesh, in the last two days. Of the three, one was involved in tiger poaching cases since 2001 belonging to the controversial Surma village within the core area of the reserve.
There are at least a dozen cases of wild life crimes against the other two persons. The arrests have come in the wake of a special drive during New Year’s eve when the threat of poaching increases. The three arrested have been forwarded to jail on Monday. According to the Field Director Shailesh Prasad, the poachers were nabbed by the members of the night patrolling team. In the latest of the two cases, a group of seven persons were found moving suspiciously in the Dudhwa Range near Bhadrola Compartment-5.
While six of them managed to escape, one person by the name of Jawahar was caught by the team. “He was a wanted wildlife criminal in the area having old cases of tiger poaching pending against him,” said Prasad. The members of the team managed to unearth tiger skin and rear parts of a tiger, that he had kept buried under the ground”, said Prasad. He belongs to Surma village, which is the only village of its kind in the country to have the status of revenue village despite being within the core area of a reserve.
In a yet another case, two persons Jhaulal and Suresh were rounded from South Sonalipur Range under Lauki Compartment -5 of the tiger reserve. They were caught with metal traps and other tools used in wildlife crimes. There are about 10-12 cases pending against them, involving the killing of various wild animals, informed prasad. “Patrolling has been intensified, with protection measures and enforcements stepped up during the season, when poaching activities are on the rise,” said Prasad. This is the time when VIP’s and their kin chose to visit the reserve when security forces are shifted from their normal duties. Further, the onset of New Year also ushers a festive mood and there is a tendency of laxity amongst the staffs, which encourages spurt in poaching, he pointed out.