BONGAIGAON: The Railway Protection Force (RPF) of NF Railway, while acting on an intelligence report, recovered a huge quantity of rare species of tortoises which were being transported illegally in train no. 13176 (Silchar - Sealdah) Kanchenjunga Express.
Talking to media, Sabyachachi De, Chief Public Relation Officer of N F Railway said that on September 25, an input from intelligence was received by IPF/CIB/LMG regarding transportation of huge quantity of tortoises by some unknown persons. “Immediately the matter was shared to IPF/RPF/LMG and GRP/LMG. Instantly, a team of CIB/LMG along with officials of RPF and GRP Lumding conducted a raid and search in train no. 13176 on arrival at Lumding Railway station. During checking, they noticed 3 suspicious black coloured bags under the custody of two persons kept under their berth. They asked the persons to open their bags and accordingly they opened the bags and found two plastic containers in each bag (i.e 6 containers) consisting of total 74 tortoises. On further interrogation they confessed that they were transporting the tortoises from Silchar to Guwahati. After completing all formalities, the recovered tortoises with plastic baskets and bags along with the two persons were taken into custody by RPF/Post/LMG for further legal action,” he stated.
“Later, the matter was informed to Forest Range Officer, Lumding Range. A team of forest officer and staff immediately attended at RPF/Post/LMG and took the custody of the 74 tortoises with relevant documents and apprehended both the persons under Wildlife Protection Act. In connection with recovery of tortoise, LMG Forest Range Officer registered a case no - L-05 of 23-24 Dated - 25/09/2023 U/S - 50,51,39,44,48(A) of Wildlife Protection Act - 1972. Both the accused persons were produced in the Lower District Court of CJM/Hojai today,” CIPRO stated.