Wildlife at risk: Futile raid against python poacher, seller

A Correspondent

Agartala: The recent report of selling of python meat at Singloom Bazar in Jampui Hills bordering Mizoram has rocked the State and the futile search operation conducted by the Forest department officials to nab the poachers has exposed the vulnerability of wildlife in the State.

Meat of six pythons weighting 150 kg was sold in the open market of Singloom at a cost of Rs 1,000 per kg and the local people purchased it in a festive mood. Behaviour of the buyers and sellers were so casual that it indicates it is a common practice in the area.

The matter came into light after the incident was reported in the media and a team of Forest Department officials led by Divisional Forest Officer Suman Das and Ranger Bibrata Marak visited the area but failed to identify the seller or the poacher of the declared endangered species of python.

However, it is the general feeling here that the Forest officials’ raid was just a eyewash as they intentionally avoided any confrontation with the local people. Saturday’s incident in Simlung Market was no exception as selling of meat of various wild animals in the markets of adjoining areas in the terrains of Jampui Hills is a common practice.

The incident once again has brought to the fore the vulnerability of wildlife in these areas which used to witness many animals and birds few years back, but it is a rare scene now.

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