Rhino killed in Kaziranga

Tezpur: Poachers have killed a one-horned rhino in the western range of Kaziranga National Park under Biswanath district of central Assam.

The incident took place around midnight on Saturday at Polokata Tapu near Sitamari, a sandbar of the Brahmaputra river, south of Baghmari power grid station under Lahorijan forest camp.

This is the second rhino killed at the world heritage site this year.

The poachers took away its horn and fled the spot which is an open area of about 200 metres from the forest camp and 5km from northern range of the park in the sixth addition.

Divisional forest officer of the national park Rohini Ballav Saikia told this correspondent from the spot that the poachers had fled with the horn. Five empty cartridges of .303 rifle were found there.

Saikia along with senior forest officials on Sunday rea-ched the spot and a joint team of forest officials and police are hunting for the poachers.

Earlier on Saturday evening, governor Jagdish Mukhi had asked officials to be alert and thwart attempts to poach rhinos in Kaziranga.

Mukhi said Assam is known worldwide for Kaziranga National Park and its one-horned rhinos.

“Indiscriminate killing of rhinos by poachers is not only an attack on rhinos, but also on the pride of the state,” Mukhi said, adding though incidents of poaching over the months had reduced drastically, the security agencies must be on their toes to foil any nefarious design to harm the rhinos.

On January 14, a female rhino was killed in the Daflang camp area of the Bagori range. However the poachers could not take away the horn.

Mukhi also asked superintendent of police, Golaghat, Manabendra Dev Ray to ensure peace along the boundary that the district shares with Nagaland.

Pranab Kumar Das Telegraph India

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