TWO HELD FOR LION, NILGAI DEATHS
Two farmers were arrested in connection with the electrocution of a lion and poisoning of 10 nilgais in Savarkundla. An Asiatic lion and 10 blue bulls were found dead inside a 50-feet-deep well near Savarkundla town on Friday. The well is located on the farm owned by Nanu Suhagiya, 75, and his son Arvind, 45, who were arrested by police. They have been remanded in police custody till June 6.
Reportedly, the nilgais died five days and the lion died four days before the carcasses were recovered.
Confirming the arrest, Range forest official K P Bhatiya said the Asiatic Lion is an endangered species under Schedule 1 of Wildlife Protection Act, 1972. Nilgais are listed under Section 3 of the Wildlife Protection Act.
According to sources, the farmers were trying to divert the attention of officials during investigation. The Forest department took help from police and used forensic experts as well as the dog squad to carry out the probe.
The duo has been arrested for violation of the Act for hunting and harming wildlife and granted bail till June 6 in the case. A panel post-mortem was performed on the animals on Friday to find out cause of death. Samples have been sent to FSL for further investigation as well. If found guilty, the duo is likely to face imprisonment from 3 to 7 years depending on the case and severity of the crime.