Three poachers held, ivories recovered in Assam

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Guwahati, Feb 13 (UNI) Three poachers and wildlife traders were arrested and five ivory pieces recovered from Assam's Karbi Anglong district today as the state scrambled to save its prized and highly endangered one-horned rhinos from the poachers' ring. Police said the poachers,involved in poaching as well as wildlife illegal trade, were nabbed from a hotel in the headquarters town of Diphu. They were also identified as Khamkhan Soum and Gopu Paite, both from Karbi Anglong, and Nur Islam, from Nagaon district.

Five ivory pieces were recovered from them, but it was yet to be weighed, police said. Today's arrest comes in the wake of apprehension of four other poachers from different parts of the state a couple of days ago.

The government has cracked the whip on poachers after it came under severe criticism following the poaching of five rhinos in the state since January. Four of these were killed in the UNESCO World Heritage Site Kaziranga National Park.

Meanwhile, a citizens' meet at Guwahati expressed concern over the rising instances of poaching in the state.

It urged the government to initiate concerted steps to stop the brutal act as well as called on the people for greater awareness against poaching.

The abroad-based North East Environment Council has also pledged its support to the cause at the same meeting.

UNI SG KK DB PY RK1730

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