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May 21, 2007
Lion claws are cult symbols in and around Saurashtra. There is a belief system built around them. Fishermen wear them before venturing out to sea, apparently to make them "lion -hearted".
The forest department destroys all the claws collected from the carcasses of dead lions so there is no official route of getting these talismans. Forest officials do not believe locals in Saurashtra would be hunting lions for their claws and claim that
mos of the claws are fake.
The Kathi Darbar Community wear them as status symbols. Sold at prices rising up to Rs 25,000 per claw, they are flaunted in pendants worn on bare chests.
Conservator of Forests, Junagadh has powers to apprehend those wearing lion claws. But there is no information of anyone having been booked so far, over the years.
source: Times of India, 13 April, 2007
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