Assam: Two more forest staffers of Kaziranga National Park arrested for involvement in rhino horn smuggling
Guwahati: Two more forest staffers of Assam’s Kaziranga National Park have been arrested for their alleged involvement in rhino horn smuggling.
The arrested forest staffers were identified as Jamser Ali and Dhanmoni Rabha.
Tthey were engaged as temporary forest workers (mahouts) in the national park.
Based on specific information, the park authority and police had arrested the forest staffers on Saturday evening.
Kaziranga National Park DFO Ramesh Kumar Gogoi said the park authority and police have arrested 19 persons including few forest staffers since September for their involvement in rhino smuggling.
“Both arrested persons have already confessed their crime and we have registered a separate case in this regard. Both were engaged as casual forest workers (mahouts) at Kohora range. During interrogation, they revealed that, they found a rhino horn inside the park and sell it to an rhino horn trader,” the Kaziranga National Park DFO said.
Earlier on October 7, police had arrested a forest guard of the national park for his involvement in rhino horn smuggling.
Poachers have killed 31 one horned rhinos in Kaziranga National Park since 2016.
According to the state forest department data, poachers killed 12 rhinos in Kaziranga National Park in 2016, 7 in 2017, 6 in 2018, 3 in 2019 and three in this year so far.
Assam is a home to the largest population of greater-one horned rhinos, with 2657 rhinos and out of which Kaziranga National Park has 2413 rhinos, Manas National Park has 43, Orang National Park has 101 and Pobitora Wildlife Sanctuary has 100.