Forest Department Arrested Pangoline Hunters

On 12-06-2020, on receipt of reliable information related to trade of Pangolin (Manis crassicaudata) scales, the FDO WLM Kinnerasani along with team of five forest officers undertook sting operation. Posing as purchaser of Pangolin scales from Nalgonda he interacted with one Mr. Ashok over phone and set up location for transaction of 1 Kg Pangolin scales for Rs.30000 at Yeallandu cross roads, Kothagudem.

On 12-06-2020 late evening around 6:00 PM, two persons reached Yellandu cross roads on bike and as planned over phone, handed over a white polythene cover to FDO WLM (undercover Purchaser) which had 445 gm of pangolin scales. During this process, both of them were trapped and were taken into custody by a team of forest officials. The Culprits were brought to Kothagudem Division office for further enquiry.

During investigation the culprits revealed their identity as Sai Manikanta, (Occupation: Student) and Shabbir, (Occupation: Student, completed degree) both resident of N jagganadhapuram, Mukalpalli mandal . Sai Manikanta informed that  Ashok informed him over phone to collect a parcel from his (Ashok’s) home in Jinnealgudem of Mulkalapalli mandal, from his (Ashok’s) mother (Geeta) and to meet Shabbir. Ashok also informed Shabbir over phone to collect parcel which will be brought by Sai Manikanta and proceed to Yellandu cross roads and hand over parcel to a person ( FDO WLM, undercover purchaser) and in turn collect money. Based on Ashok’s directions Shabbir called FDO WLM (undercover purchaser) and finalized location. Both, Shabbir and Sai Manikanta were trapped during this operation.

In the early morning of 13-06-2020 a team lead by FDO WLM, Kinnarsani raided the house of Ashok in Jinnelagudem of Rachanna GP of Mulkalapalli mandal. Upon enquiry, Ashok’s mother (Konapakula Geeta W/O late Seenu Occupation: Self employed) revealed that she had purchased these scales form their neighbors Payam Babu Rao s/o Bangaru, Payam Nagamani w/o Babu rao, and Uke Chinnraju alias (Bojji) s/o Laxmudu all resident of Rachannagudem  for Rs. 3000 and handed over to Sai Manikanta.

Further, enquiry revealed that they had killed Pangolin while passing through forest area near Jinnelagudem ( Mulkalapalli range) four months back  and removed scales after boiling the dead pangolin, while the meat was eaten by three of them on the same day. Further process is being followed to produce the culprits before Hon’ble Court and for seeking remand of the Culprits.
 -Press note

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