Thane: The Thane Forest Department on Wednesday detained four people for smuggling wild animals and birds. The team also recovered 16 star tortoises and five parakeets from them.
Thane Forest Department range officer Rakesh Bhoir said, “The Thane Forest Department and the Wildlife Welfare Association (WWA) received information that a few people would be bringing the rare animals for sale in Malad and Crawford Market areas. Based on this information, I along with Thane sub-conservator of forests Santosh Saste, assistant conservator of forests Girija Desai and WWA core committee member Rohit Mohite and his colleagues laid traps at both locations.” Mr Bhoir added that Pramod Pal, Shakir Khan, Rashid Khan and Deepak Mhatre were detained while the parakeets and tortoises in their possession were rescued.
According to Mr Mohite, the parakeets are sold for around Rs2,000-3,000 each, while the star tortoises are sold at around Rs2,000 each. “The rescued parakeets and tortoises, as of now, have been kept at the forest office at Teen Hath Naka in Thane,” he said.
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