In the biggest seizure of its kind in the country, a joint operation by the Wildlife Crime Control Bureau (WCCB) Guwahati and Guwahati Forest Range office a huge cache of wild animal body parts beside marine animal products were seized in a raid at Kamakhya temple in Guwahati.
The marine animal products besides musk pods, porcupine spikes and other animal body parts were seized during the raid.
Three persons have been arrested in this connection.
According to a WCCB official for the first time it has happened that marine products have been seized in Northeast – a region far away from coasts of the country.
The first raid conducted at Ganeshguri Lakhi Mandir seized 600 pieces of sea fans (enlisted in Schedule-I of the Wildlife Protection Act, 1972).
According to the official, a man identified as Rahul Choudhary, was arrested and based on his confession, another raid was conducted at two places of a market area of Kamakhya Temple.
He said 29 kg of sea fans were seized from the possession of Jitendra Saha at Kamakhya temple.
Other seizures there included 5 kg sea fan from Santosh Gupta, 14 pieces of suspected musk pod, 1.5 kg porcupine spikes, 43 pieces of Hathjora, and several unidentified animal body parts.
Sea fans look a lot like plants with colourful, forked ‘branches’ but they are actually animals, just like their relatives, the corals and jellies.
Sea fans are colonial animals made up of many tiny, individual animals that work together as one.