AK Rifle used for killing rhino in Kaziranga, poachers arrested with horn: Police - Hindustan Times
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AK Rifle used for killing rhino in Kaziranga, poachers arrested with horn: Police

ByBiswa Kalyan Purkayastha
Jan 27, 2024 02:40 PM IST

This was the first case of rhino poaching in Assam this year and officials said that the poachers entered Kaziranga by crossing the Brahmaputra river

The Assam Police on Saturday arrested a team of suspected animal poachers who killed an adult female rhino in Kaziranga National Park and Tiger Reserve earlier this week. Police said that they have recovered a Rifle of AK Series, which was used for killing the rhino.

The Assam Police said they have recovered the poached rhino horn along with an AK Rifle and several rounds of live bullets from Golaghat district. (Image posted on X by Assam DGP)
The Assam Police said they have recovered the poached rhino horn along with an AK Rifle and several rounds of live bullets from Golaghat district. (Image posted on X by Assam DGP)

“Poachers have been arrested along with recovery of poached horn and the AK Rifle used in the poaching. Some more recoveries are yet to be made along with reconstruction of Crime Scene,” Assam director general of police (DGP) Gyanendra Pratap Singh wrote on X on Saturday.

A female rhino was killed by the poachers at Agoratoli Forest Range under Kaziranga National Park and Tiger Reserve on January 21 and the carcass was recovered on the next day. According to the officials, the poachers removed the horn and fled.

This was the first case of rhino poaching in Assam this year and officials said that the poachers entered Kaziranga by crossing the Brahmaputra river.

Police said that they launched an operation after the incident and managed to trace the poachers within a week.

“We followed the available links and kept eyes on possible markets. It was expected the poachers would try to sell the horn. We received specific information on Friday and arrested the poachers,” a senior cop said.

DGP said, “In an outstanding investigation, a team led by the superintendent of police (SP) Golaghat cracked the case of recent rhino poaching at Kaziranga.

One of the arrested poachers has been identified as Joge Pegu, a resident of Bijni subdivision of Chirang district. Police said that they are investigating the matter further and more details will be shared later.

After almost three decades, Assam recorded zero poaching of rhinos in 2022. Hollywood actor Leonardo DiCaprio and several others across the globe praised the Assam government for its efforts to stop such killings.

Police said that in the last three years, some extraordinary measures were taken to stop poaching and as a result, it has reduced. “We are keeping strict vigil on each and every movement including the sale of animal body parts because the sale of such products are the cause of most of the killings,” police said.

DGP praised the police for arresting the poachers. He said, “Compliments to the entire team and supervisory officers. Our commitment to protect One horned Rhinos is unwavering.”

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