Wildlife Crime Bureau Captures Wildlife Traffickers with Huge Contraband in Jammu & Kashmir
In an exceptional operation, the Wildlife Crime Control Bureau (WCCB), New Delhi, has captured two wildlife traffickers in the Anantnag area of Srinagar Valley and Manwal in the Jammu region of Jammu & Kashmir. In the collaboration with WCCB officers, officers of the Jammu and Kashmir Wildlife Department and police simultaneously raided two places where the contraband was informed to be hidden.
The operation was a success and the officers seized a huge quantity of contraband, including body parts of endangered species like leopard, musk deer pods, and Himalayan Black bear. According to the official statement, In the raid in Anantnag, 8 leopard pelts, 38 bear biles, 4 musk pods were seized from Mr. Gul Mohammad Ganie R/o Sherpura, Anantnag. 5 Leopard pelts, 7 leopard nails, 8 canines, 2 molars, 2 leopard skulls and leopard bones (04 Jawbones, 140 bones pieces), 01 musk teeth were seized in Manwal of Jammu region from Mr. Kushal Hussain Bocked R/o Kingriyal, Jammu.
The WCCB has also made two arrests – one each from Anantnag in Srinagar and Manwal in Jammu – during the raids. Initial investigation has revealed that both the offenders arrested in two places were partners in the Illegal Wildlife Trade.
The seized animal parts belong to leopard, bear, and musk deer, which are listed in Schedule I of the Wildlife Protection Act, 1972. As per the Act, poaching of these animals to trade their parts is punishable with a minimum of three years of imprisonment extended up to seven years.
The ministry said,
Preliminary investigation revealed that both the offenders arrested in two places were partners in the illegal wildlife trade. Further investigation will reveal for how long they have been involved in this illegal trade, as also quantum, extent, and associates of this illegal business.
Union Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar congratulated the WCCB on its undeterred commitment to protect the wildlife.
Kudos to the team of @WCCBHQ , J&K police and the Forest department for their successful operation and arresting 2 main kingpins involved in illegal wildlife trafficking in the J&K region.
Keep up the continued commitment towards ending wildlife crime. https://t.co/v4u0cYDWm8
— Prakash Javadekar (@PrakashJavdekar) January 30, 2021
The official statement of the ministry said that the present seizure is one of the largest captures in the recent past. Musk deer and Himalayan Black bear are endangered species and poached for musk pods, bear bile, which is used in Traditional Chinese Medicines.
After due process, the Department of Wildlife Protection filed an offense report for filing FIR in the respective police stations and handed over the accused to the police authorities. According to the officials, more efforts are being made to trace the forward and backward linkages of this illegal activity, demand and supply chains, and onward traders.
The practice of wildlife poaching to sell the invaluable body parts of animals in the black market has continued to grow despite countless protection laws and efforts.