Are international gangs involved in rhino poaching in Assam?

Guwahati, Sept 28: The one-horned rhinoceroses, considered the natural heritage of Assam, are under constant attack from poachers, since flood has hit the state.

The poachers are attacking and killing rhinos with great audacity. Officials informed that most of the rhinos have strayed to nearby hilly areas to avoid flood waters inside Kaziranga National Park, their natural abode.

Two more rhinos were killed by poachers on Thursday, Sept 27. Sources say poachers took away the horns of the rhinos. The incident comes close on the heels of brutal attack on one more rhino on Wednesday.

Incidents of rhino poaching in Assam have created concern to all animal loving people of the state. In fact, they have demanded the government to take quick action against the miscreants. After large-scale protest across the state in relation to constant threat to rhinos, Assam government ordered a probe by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) into all incidents of rhino poaching in the State in the last three years.

Activists working in safety and protection of rhinos suspect hands of international gangs behind all these attacks.

"Rhino horns fetch huge sum of money in the international market. We cannot rule out the involvement of international gangs behind killings of rhinos in Assam," said an activist.

Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi has announced a bounty of Rs 5 lakh for anyone who could help the police and other investigating agencies with information about the poachers.

With the spurt in rhino killings, the state government has decided to take the help of the army to take on the poachers.

"Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi has agreed to take the army's help. The army will take care of the area under Karbi Anglong where the poachings are taking place," Forest Minister Rockybul Hussain said here on Thursday. Hussain informed that the state government will also approach the CBI to start a probe into the rhino poachings over the past three years.

The park has 2,290 rhinos and poaching remains a serious concern because of high demand for rhino horns in Southeast Asia and China.

Kaziranga National Park is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Since last week, most of the areas of the Park is under flood waters. Due to floods, a total of 22 animals have died inside the park, informed officials. Two-thirds of the world's Indian rhinoceroses are now confined to the Kaziranga National Park situated in the Golaghat district of Assam, India.

OneIndia News

Please Wait while comments are loading...