Wednesday, December 1, 2021

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Assam forest department to destroy rhino horns stored over 4 decades

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Assam’s Environment and Forest Department has decided to destroy around 2,500 rhino horns and other animals’ body parts which has been stored in the district treasuries.

The destruction would be in conformity with a section of the Wildlife (Protection) Act of 1972.

5% would be preserved: said M. K Yadava

On Monday, Chief Wildlife Warden M. K Yadava said “About 5% of the specimens would be preserved for education, awareness and scientific purposes”.

He also said a final decision on destroying the horns and parts of other animals will be taken on August 29 after a public hearing and on the basis of recommendations from state-level committee constituted last month for the purpose. “Based on the public hearing and the recommendations of the committee, the plan to destroy the horns would be finalised”.

Experts praises the move to destroy the horns

Joint director of Wildlife Trust of India Rathin Barman said “Scientifically, rhino horns do not have any value. But they have a price in some markets based on superstitions about its medicinal properties. If we preserve them, it will convey the message that we believe in such superstitions. The horns stored in Assam should be destroyed”.

Mrinal Talukdar, a member of the committee constituted for the verification of the horns, said “Preserving them could give a message to poachers that the horns are indeed of value and could lead to more poaching of the species.”

How the process got done?


The process involved forensic examination, extraction of DNA material, generation of barcode for each part, measurement and weighing of specimens and photography.

 Forest department stated “All the activities are duly photo captured and video graphed. The operation is screened live on big monitors kept outside the halls for public viewing and transparency”.

Also Read: ‘Taliban sympathisers’ are on the watch list of Assam Police’: CM Himanta Biswa Sarma

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