In a drive against armed poachers active in Satkosia wild life sanctuary, forest department officials have arrested three poachers and seized two country made guns from their possession.
The arrested poachers are identified as Pratap Pradhan of local jaganathpur village, Bati pradhan of Balikera area of cuttack district and Muna Garnaik of local Labangi,sanctuary official sources here today said.
Bati Pradhan was earlier a forest watchman and later was jailed for crime in relating to poaching. The officials are on look out other gang members of the gang who are absconding.
Divisonal forest officer of sakosia Wild life sanctuary S M T Rahman said last week when a gang of sharp shooters were retuning after poaching in satkosia they were confronted with a forest official team at Raigoda area.
The miscreants then beat up forest officials. After the incident three teams of forest officials were formed to nab the culprits. They succeeded in tracking the criminals on last Friday and booked under 1972 Wild life Protection Act.
The DFO said there are as many as 20 sharp shooters active in this sensitive forest zone and have been poaching wild animals. Besides there are also many others supporting this gang in killing animals.
He said rampant gun licences given to the people in and around Satkosia area are causing concern for the forest officials. The licenses were issued without verification of the satkosia wild life authorities.