A summary follows of the seizures/poaching incidents in India since May to December 1996, following on from reports in 16(2):


25 May: 2 Tiger skins (Andhra Pradesh);

27 May: 1 Tiger skin and 20 Tiger nails (Madhya Pradesh);

May-June: at least 10 rhinos poached in Kaziranga National Park (Assam);

12 June: 1 Asiatic Lion Panthera leo persica (App. I) skin;

13 May: 1 dead elephant in Kankrajhore - tusks removed (West Bengal);

end June: 1 Tiger found poisoned in Sanjay National Park, (Madhya Pradesh);

mid-July: 1 Tiger skin, 4 Leopard skins, 270 kg ivory (Arunachal Pradesh).

19 August: 1 Leopard skin; 1 wild dog Cuon alpinus skin; 3 Chital Axis axis antlers. Three arrests in Ambedkar Nagar, Bihar.

end August: 2 Tigers; 2 elephant calves allegedly killed with poisoned arrows by tribal poachers,Palamau Tiger Reserve (Bihar).

9 September: 1 Leopard skin in Rishikesh, Uttar Pradesh. Two arrests.

end September: 1 Tiger skin seized by Uttar Pradesh Forest Department, Kalagarh, near Corbett Tiger Reserve.

17 September: 2 Leopard skins seized by Forest and Wildlife Department. One arrest in Delhi.

TRAFFIC Bulletin Seizures and Prosecutions: Vol. 16 No. 3 (March 1997) to Vol. 21 No. 3 (January 2008)

27 September: 1 Tiger found dead in Hemnagar, Sunderbans Tiger Reserve, West Bengal(unconfirmed poaching case).

26 October: 1 Leopard, 2 Leopard cubs found poisoned in Dangs District, Gujarat.

30 October: 1.1 kg ivory articles, Palika Bazaar, New Delhi, seized by Delhi Administration andWildlife Preservation acting on information from TRAFFIC India.

1 November: 1 Leopard skin; 2 Jungle Cat Felis chaus skins (Delhi). One arrest by office of Deputy Director of Wildlife Preservation, Northern Region.

3 November: 1 Leopard skin (Indore, Madhya Pradesh). One arrest.

5 November: Fur coats: 2 Red Fox, 5 Jungle Cat and 2 Jackal from shop in Chanakyapuri, New Delhi.Seizure by Delhi Administration.

8 November: Deputy Conservator of Forests seized 10 shawls made of wool of Tibetan Antelope Pantholops hodgsoni (App. I) (shahtoosh). 1 person arrested at shop in New Delhi hotel, with assistance of Wildlife Protection Society of India.

12 November: 12 pure ‘shahtoosh’ wool shawls at Indira Ghandi International Airport. Bound forLondon, UK.

18 November: 5 pure ‘shahtoosh’ wool shawls/15 shawls of pashmina/‘shahtoosh’ mix from shop in Dilli Hat, New Delhi, following information provided by TRAFFIC India.

9 December: 108 articles from taxidermist in Chandigarh including rhino, 1 mounted Tiger cub, 1 piece of Tiger skin, 1 Jungle Cat trophy, 1 Jungle Cat skin, 1 Leopard Cat Prionailurus bengalensis (App.II) skin; 1 mounted Jaguar Panthera onca (App. I), 2 Leopard skins, Lion Panthera leo persica, Sambar Cervus unicolor, Chinkara Gazella gazella, Chital and Gharial Gavialis gangeticus.

12 December: 2 elephant tusks (21.5 kg total) by Jaipur flying squad (Rajasthan), assisted by TRAFFIC India and Wildlife Preservation officials.

In early July 1996, the following articles were seized from a group of Narikorava tribals of southern India: 150 heads/140 tails of jackal, skins of 3 Slender Lorises Nycticebus tardigradus (App. II), 7 Chital Axis axis skins, and an undisclosed number of skins of monitor lizards, hedgehogs and crocodiles. The tribals claimed that the items were to be smuggled to Malaysia for sale. Some members of this tribe - which is reported to be regularly involved in the trade of wildlife articles - were apprehended two years’ ago while trying to sell Tiger parts in Singapore.

On 11 July 1996, the Director General of Border Roads seized 270 kg of ivory, skins of 1 Tiger Panthera tigris and 4 Leopards Panthera pardus (App. I) at Bomdila, Arunachal Pradesh. The contraband was seized from a Nepali who had concealed the articles in a truck belonging to the Central Public Works Department.

During 24 to 28 July 1996, an undercover operation near Corbett Tiger Reserve yielded the skin and skeleton of a Tiger Panthera tigris (App. I) and led to the arrest of two men wanted for involvement in the trade in Tigers. Members of the Wildlife Protection Society of India (WPSI), acting on information provided by the authorities of Corbett Nature Reserve, posed as decoy buyers at a rest house adjacent to Project Tiger headquarters in Ramnagar, in an attempt to apprehend a well-known Tiger poacher and trader, and his associates, who were known to be operating in the area. After locating the traders and four days spent winning their confidence, WPSI was offered (but not shown) 3 Tiger skeletons and up to 7 Tiger skins. Refusing to give cash in advance, the investigators struck a deal and, on 28 July, a stock of Tiger bones and a large Tiger skin were brought to the rest house by three men. The skin, in poor condition and marked with a bullet hole, and the 12 kg of bones are believed to derive from one specimen that one of the men admitted to having killed near the park over a year earlier. Two men were arrested by Forestry authorities; the third escaped. The pair face up to seven years’ imprisonment and a fine of Rs10 000 (USD278). This is the fourth major offence detected within and

around Corbett National Park during 1996 as part of Operation Monsoon, initiated in 1994 to maintain and strengthen security measures in the reserve during the monsoon season. This latest operation was carried out jointly by officials of Corbett Tiger Reserve and adjoining forestry divisions.

On 14 August 1996, the Forest Department of Tamil Nadu seized 1016 juvenile Indian Star Tortoises Geochelone elegans (App. II) from a vehicle at Vellai Gate, near Kancheepuram. Three people were arrested. A few weeks earlier, one of the three suspects had assisted the Regional Deputy Director, Wildlife Preservation in Madras, during a raid on the residences of two field collectors of Indian Star Tortoises. On that occasion, 222 specimens were seized and three people arrested. All the tortoises allegedly had been destined for export to Southeast Asia, Singapore in particular.

TRAFFIC Bulletin Seizures and Prosecutions: Vol. 16 No. 3 (March 1997) to Vol. 21 No. 3 (January 2008)

On 31 October 1996, as a result of an investigation by TRAFFIC India, Wildlife Preservation officials in New Delhi seized the mounted head of 1 Leopard Panthera pardus (App. I), and skins of 2 Jungle Cats Felis chaus (App. II) which had been painted to resemble a Leopard and a Marbled Cat Pardofelis marmorata (both App. I). Two Kashmiri youths were arrested.

Wildlife Protection Society of India; TRAFFIC India




Source:  http://www.traffic.org/bulletin/