Burning Issues

Poaching of wildlife in India - Year 2005

Tigers, Leopards

Birds and other animals

Timber Mafia


1 st Feb. 2005 . In the early hours of the day, the Delhi police raided the basement of a warehouse in Patel Nagar and discovered a huge stock of wildlife products.


The haul consisted of 39 leopard skins (including one snow leopard), 2 tiger skins, 42 otter skins, 3 kg of tiger claws, 14 tiger canines, 10 tiger jaw bones, about 135 kg of porcupine quills, 60 kg of tiger and leopards paws, and 20 small pieces of bone that appear to be tiger and leopard 'floating' clavicle bones.


Four people were arrested, including the niece and another relative of the notorious wildlife trader Sansar Chand, and two employees at the warehouse. The four were brought before Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate, Mr Manoj Jain, this afternoon and were remanded to judicial custody for 14 days. Advocate Anil Sehgal represented the accused in court.


The case has now been handed over to the Delhi Forest and Wildlife authorities.


This shocking new seizure is proof that Delhi is still the hub of the illegal wildlife trade.


Sansar Chand is presently absconding from another wildlife case in Jaipur last year. His wife Rani and son Akash were arrested in this case on 18 October 2004 . They are still being held in custody in Rajasthan. In April 2004, Chand was convicted to five years imprisonment, in another wildlife case in Ajmer . Three weeks later he was granted bail on a technicality.


Spanning a period of at least 30 years in the trade, Chand was first arrested in September 1974, for a seizure which included tiger and leopard skins. He was convicted in this case in April 1982 to one and a half year's rigorous imprisonment.


6th February 2005 .

The Patna Police arrested three persons involved in illegal trade of sarus cranes and white necked stork. During interrogation it was revealed that the species were being smuggled out to Bangladesh . A bird fetched over Rs 15,000 in the international market.



Sarus Crane






Feb21, 2005



Ten shahtoosh shawls and a number of mixed shahtoosh–pashmina shawls were seized in an undercover operation by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) assisted by the Wildlife Trust of India (WTI) late Sunday afternoon.The owner of an up-market store, Gulati Silks and Sarees, located in the heart of Chandigarh in Sector 17 was arrested with an accomplice.


28 January 2005 : CRPF Director General J.K. Sinha: ‘‘Criminals and organized mafia are using the Naxal movement to make money. Timber mafia and the organized extortion racket of Bihar and Andhra Pradesh are not only posing as Naxalites but in many cases they are using the services of the Naxal cadre to extort money through kidnapping and smuggling... The money made through such means is in many cases shared by the organised mafia with the Naxals.''

The DG said that his force had come across several instances where the Naxalites were in cahoots with the organized mafia. ‘‘Either the Naxal cadre is being used or the money is being shared,'' Sinha said. According to him, smuggling of ‘kattha' from the Chatara forest in Bihar was one such example. ‘‘Local forest officials, Naxals and the organised mafia are all involved in this operation,'' he said.

This organization estimates that the majority of timber smuggling in Bihar and Andhra Pradesh is now being run under the garb of the Left-wing movement. ‘‘There is a nexus between government officials... Forest officials and other local officials are in hand-in glove with these criminal groups who are using the Naxal movement for their own convenience,'' he said.


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