After showing reluctance for long to lodge cases of poaching, several senior forest and police officers from the state dashed to Nagpur on Tuesday to interrogate notorious tiger poacher Surajbhan alias Sarju Bagdi. TOI on September 19 had reported that even as tiger hides from the state's reserves were being seized in faraway Nepal, MP forest department was reluctant to lodge cases of poaching. It was reported that MP is a crucial link in the international poaching corridor straddling Maharashtra, Uttar Pradesh, Nepal and Tibet.
Surajbhan is on remand with Nagpur forest officials, who have arrested more 30 poachers in the past three months, including around 20 from Katni and Damoh district of MP.
While they were allowed to interact with him, Maharashtra officers advised them to get an offence registered if they were serious about the investigations.
Maharashtra officers also shared inputs on poaching of two tigers from Balaghat and Seoni district. Officers of the Wildlife Crime Control Bureau (WCCB) asked MP team to register an offence, if they were really keen on breaking the poaching syndicate.
"Teams have been formed for a major crackdown on poachers. We have sought help from police and we are hopeful that there would be fresh arrests from the state," chief wildlife warden (CWW) Narendra Kumar told TOI. The CID has joined the investigations. "The forest department has approached us for a support. Our inspectors have joined them," said Rajeev Tandon, additional director general (ADG) of CID.
Their Maharashtra counterparts nabbed 13 members of a gang of poachers from MP in the last three months. More....