Forest department officials arrested six persons for poaching from Rethal village in Sanand Taluka of Ahmedabad. The arrested poachers were found in possession of eight Schedule I and Schedule II animals.
These animals had been subjected to torture and were either killed or had their tails cut. The department recovered six Agra monitor lizards popularly known as Patla Gho, one Indian Turtle and a cobra. The cobra is a Schedule II animal.
T Karuppasamy, deputy conservator of forests, Nalsarovar, said that the department had received information that poaching of lizards, turtles and cobras was going on in Sanand and Nalsarovar area. "After this, the department had kept a close watch in the area. Those arrested include Deva Fulwadi, Kesha Fulwadi, Bhavan Fulwadi, Vala Fulwadi and Ramtu Fulwadi. The six persons are between 35 and 45 years of age and all residents of Mankol village in Sanand," Karuppasamy said.
Officials said they had received a tip-off on another occasion too but before the team could reach the spot, the six poachers had escaped.
On Tuesday afternoon also, a raid was conducted after receiving a tip-off and the six persons were arrested with the protected animals. The officials said one Mukesh Bhati, a trustee of the Ahmedabad-based NGO, had informed the officials after he saw some eight animals with these six persons.
The officials further said that the animals were kept in bags and some of them had even been killed. The six have been booked under various section of Wildlife Protection Act of 1972.
This is the second such incident this year. Earlier, in May, a flock of 60 coots were trapped, their legs and wings broken to prevent them from taking flight. The police officials had arrested two people - Kadar Khamasa and Valli Mohammed - from Ramgarh village in Ahmedabad district. Khamasa and Mohammed, who are residents of Jambu village in Limbdi Taluka of Surnedranagar, were into illegal trade of migratory birds.