Guwahati, Aug 22: The Centre has approved additional firepower for Assam's forest authorities even as the state's famous on-horned rhinos continue to be killed by poachers.
Two rhinos were killed in the southern part of the Kaziranga National Park on Wednesday with the poachers sawing off the horn of one of them. The poachers are suspected to be militants.
As many as 18 rhinos have been killed by poachers in the park so far in 2013. The figure is 22 across the state. Since 2008, 75 rhinos have been killed, 48 of which belonged to Kaziranga. Besides, several others were killed in floods.
Official estimates say Assam has 2,552 rhinos of which, 2,329 are in Kaziranga. Pobitora Wildlife Sanctuary and Orang National Park have 100 rhinos each while Manas National Park has 23 rhinos.
State forest authorities said plans about erecting solar-powered electric fence wat a 50-km stretcj were being taken to stop the animals move out of the park, especially during floods. They said to have asked the Centre to deploy unmanned aerial vehicle to monitor the wildlife safety but was reportedly turned down on security grounds.