JORABAT, March 24 - Police in Jorabat today seized a consignment of exotic animals that included several mammals, reptiles and scorpions.
The seized mammals included a sugar glider, a meerkat and three marmosets, while the reptiles included an African spurred tortoise, 13 corn snakes, two albino reticulated pythons, four Gabon vipers and a central bearded dragon. Eight giant scorpions were also seized.
Partha Pratim Gogoi, in-charge of Jorabat police outpost, said the seizure was made after a Tata Sumo (MZ-01-H-1191) with the driver and a lone passenger coming from Aizawl was apprehended during a routine check on the NH-37 in Jorabat at around 9.15 am. The consignment was destined for New Delhi.
Pradipta Baruah, Divisional Forest Officer, Guwahati Wildlife Division, termed it a big success in terms of rescue of animals.
A team of officials from the Amchang Wildlife Sanctuary took the animals in their possession and later handed them to the Assam State Zoo.
Tejas Mariswamy, DFO Assam State Zoo, said the animals were now in safe custody and would get proper care and veterinary support.
The specimens were identified by Narayan Sharma of Cotton University and Jayaditya Purkayastha of Help Earth.
The accused are now in police custody. Police said the seized animals were valued around Rs 3-4 crore in the international market.