Probes are on to find out the culprits behind the killings of endangered rhinos. Investigating agencies suspect the hand of illegal Bangladeshi migrants behind the death of rhinos. Investigators also suspect involvement of militants of the Karbi Peoples' Liberation Tigers.
"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, working to save the rhinos.
The rare one-horned rhinoceros are killed for its prized horn.
"The price of these horns in the international market varies from Rs 40 lakh to Rs 90 lakh," added the activist.
Poachers take good advance of annual floods in Assam, when Kaziranga National Park is almost submerged in waters. During floods, rhinos and other animals shift to nearby hilly areas and that is when poachers kill them.
"Recently, poachers killed five rhinos in four days taking advantage of the flood waters that submerged 90 per cent of Kaziranga," said an official of Kaziranga National Park.
Kaziranga National Park is an UNESCO world heritage site.
Most of the times, rhinos meet gruesome deaths as poachers take away their horns and leave them to bleed to death.
The sources said that, in the 1988 flood, 1,203 rhinos were killed while 10 years later 652 of them died in another wave of devastating flood.
The Kaziranga National Park is said to have 2,290-strong rhino population as per the last census conducted this year.