5 held in Mizoram’s largest haul of exotic animals | Popgen Tech


A wild cat was seized by Mizoram Police and wildlife department officials.

A wild cat was seized by Mizoram Police and wildlife department officials.


Mizoram police, along with wildlife department officials, have seized 468 exotic animals, the largest haul of these species, smuggled from neighboring Myanmar, which has been torn by strife, officials said on Thursday.

Five people were arrested in connection with the smuggling of a variety of exotic wild animal species such as potos or bush bears native to Africa, State officials said on Thursday.

More than the number of animals, the officials were alarmed by the modus operandi of the smugglers. They casually crossed the Tlau, a river on the India-Myanmar border carrying the animals, in sacks and boxes, on their heads.

“They could try to pass as Myanmar citizens fleeing the civil war, coming with whatever they can save on themselves,” a police officer in Champhai, a district on the Myanmar border, said on condition of anonymity.

He said the police acted on a tip-off and intercepted the five smugglers at Chailbawia junction in Champhai district and handed him over to the Customs Prevention Force along with the animals.

The animals seized included 442 lizards, 11 snakes (mostly albino pythons), four three-toed sloths, four polecats, four turtles, two beavers and a wild cat.

“The five people arrested are couriers who agreed to do the job for money. We are trying to find out who in Mizoram is behind this network,” the officer said.

On May 8, enforcement agencies in Mizoram seized kangaroos, rats, meerkats, white cockatoos and Burmese pythons – animals not found in India – smuggled out of Myanmar in vehicles. Some exotic animals are smuggled to other parts of India.

These animals were seized in West Bengal and Andhra Pradesh a few months ago.

Officials said that these exotic animals are smuggled into India from breeding farms in Thailand, Indonesia and Myanmar.

The seizure of exotic animals almost coincides with that of 30,000 bottles of Pheneydyl, a cough syrup high in banned codeine, on the outskirts of Guwahati. “We have arrested three people in connection with one of the biggest cough syrup busts in recent times,” Joint Commissioner of Police Partha Sarathi Mahanta said.


Source link