PHOTOS: DRI Seizes 781 Bengal Monitor Lizard Hemipenes And 19.6 Kg Of Soft Corals Near Nashik

By: Ankita Apte | April 15, 2024

A team from the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI) in Mumbai thwarted an attempt to traffic endangered wildlife species near Nashik

The operation resulted in the seizure of 781 Bengal Monitor Lizard Hemipenes, locally known as "Hatha Jodis," and 19.6 kg of soft corals

Both these materials are listed under Schedule-I of the Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972, according to an official release

Acting on specific intelligence, a team of DRI officers from Mumbai laid a trap for the traffickers and apprehended them despite many hurdles

The extremely cautious trafficker changed locations, choosing a tribal hamlet for exchange and also engaging patrol groups

However, the DRI team evaded identification and attempted to rush in but was stopped by a patrol group and later pelted with stones by tribals

Despite the obstacles, the officers chased them for over half a kilometre on foot in the rough terrain, managing to apprehend the trafficker and recover the rare species near Nashik

The seized wildlife articles, along with the detained individual, were handed over to the Maharashtra State Forest Officials

They will be charged under the Wildlife Protection Act