4 Poachers, 2 Timber Smugglers Apprehended in Similipal Tiger Reserve

4 Poachers, 2 Timber Smugglers Apprehended in Similipal Tiger Reserve

In a significant victory for conservation efforts, forest officials in Odisha apprehended six individuals involved in illegal activities inside the Similipal Tiger Reserve (STR) on Sunday. The arrests included four poachers and two timber smugglers, highlighting the ongoing threat to the reserve’s biodiversity.

Two poachers were caught by the Similipal Special Tiger Protection Force (STPF) patrolling the Jenabil wildlife range. While two others carrying weapons managed to evade capture, officials seized two country-made guns, ammunition, and poaching tools from the apprehended individuals.

Similarly, in the Dukura wildlife range, a joint task force alongside local staff nabbed two more poachers. However, seven others involved in the same group managed to escape.

The crackdown also extended to timber smuggling. During a patrol in the Pithabata North range, forest officials apprehended two individuals illegally felling a Kasi tree, a valuable native species.

STR Field Director, Prakash Chand Gogineni, confirmed the arrests and seizures, stating that three cases have been registered. Further investigation is underway to identify and apprehend the remaining individuals involved in these illegal activities.

This operation sends a strong message to those jeopardizing the Similipal Tiger Reserve’s ecological balance. The continued vigilance and coordinated efforts of forest officials are crucial in protecting this critically important wildlife sanctuary.