Six held in Telangana for killing leopard, trying to sell its skin

Officials said that the accused had killed the leopard in the Mangi forest in Telangana’s Komaram Bheem Asifabad district.
Six held in Telangana for killing leopard, trying to sell its skin
Six held in Telangana for killing leopard, trying to sell its skin
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The Ramagundam Task Force intercepted nine people who were smuggling leopard skin during a vehicle check in Telangana’s Mancherial district. While six of them were nabbed, the prime accused and two others fled from the scene.   

On interrogation, it was found that the leopard was killed in the Mangi forest in Komaram Bheem Asifabad district of Telangana. The accused had allegedly killed the leopard two weeks ago. The police seized the animal skin and also seized the vehicles used by the accused.

The accused had smuggled its skin to the local village from the forests for sale, the police said, adding that they would find out how the leopard was caught by the accused and how it was killed. According to the police, the leopard that was killed was identified to be around 2-years old.

The checkpost was set up based on intelligence inputs. Special teams were formed with members from the Task Force, Special Branch and from the local police. The accused is said to have been travelling in an auto and on a bike. The accused were on the lookout for prospective buyers for the skin. On seizure, the skin was handed over to Forest Department officials. The prime accused Shankar and two others are absconding.  

In Telangana, Adilabad, Nirmal, Mancherial and Komaram bheem are districts that have thick forest cover. Several check posts are usually set up in the various forests in these districts to check for timber smuggling and wildlife poaching. These checkposts also have armed policemen to assist the unarmed staff from the Forest Department who are the ones often manning such posts. 

In some of the forests, the increased surveillance and coordination has helped check illegal activities including poaching. Often, drone cameras are used in the forests to keep an eye out for any suspicious activity.

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