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Crime Branch initiates probe into tiger’s death in Odisha forest


Bargarh: With the contradictory statements by the Forest department over tiger’s death in Debrigarh forest continue to raise confusion among wildlife activists, the Crime Branch initiated a probe into the recovery of the carcass of the tiger.

A four-member team led by Crime Branch DSP Bilasini Nayak visited the site where the carcass of the tiger was recovered at Debrigarh forest on October 29 in Bargarh district.

By the directive of Additional DGP, the team reached the spot. We visited the site where the tiger was killed and dumped. We came to know that several parts of tigers were taken away by the accused poachers. Four Accused have already been arrested and forwarded to the court. We are reviewing the distance of the site from the sanctuary and village. The report will be submitted following the probe, which is underway, said Bilasini Nayak, DSP, Crime Branch (wildlife cell), Bhubaneswar.

Worth mentioning, the animal, whose carcass was found in Debrigarh forest last week, is believed to be a Royal Bengal tiger, not a leopard.

Yesterday, Forest & Environment Additional Chief Secretary Suresh Mohapatra had revealed that the animal carcass was of the Royal Bengal tiger.

“The pug and moustaches seized from the arrested accused poachers were of a Royal Bengal tiger,” he told media reporters on Sunday.

However, the revelation contradicted to the statement by the Forest & Environment Minister Bijayshree Routray and PCCF (wildlife) chief Sandeep Tripathy, who claimed that the carcass of the animal was of the leopard, not the Royal Bengal tiger.

Sources close to the development said that the forest officials have found a pug and seven moustaches from the accused. The arrested persons have confessed before the forest officials that they had dumped the tiger after poaching on October 28 night.

The carcass of the animal was found from the dense forest in Debrigarh on October 29.

The prima facie suggested that the carcass was of the Royal Bengal tiger. It was suspected that the tiger was killed for the purpose of nails and teeth, which were missing from the decomposed body. The head of the tiger was also found detached from the body.

The probe was initiated into the killing of the tiger following which the minister came up with a statement that the carcass was of a leopard.