Raipur: Police have arrested five people, including two police officials and a government school teacher, in connection with the seizure of a tiger’s skin in Chhattisgarh’s Bastar district, an official said on Sunday.
With this, a total of 13 people have so far been arrested in connection with the tiger skin seizure on Friday, he said.
“Five more persons were arrested on Saturday from separate places when their involvement in the case came to light,” Inspector General of Police (Bastar range) Sundarraj P told PTI.
Of these, two villagers from Dantewada district were allegedly involved in killing the tiger and giving its skin to the other accused, he said.
On Friday, eight persons, including five policemen and two health department personnel, were arrested along with a tiger skin in Jagdalpur town (Bastar district) when they were planning to allegedly perform some rituals with the hide, assuming it would bring prosperity to them, the official said.
Two assistant sub-inspectors Santosh Baghel and Ramesh Aganpalli, both posted in Bijapur, were also taken into custody at that time for interrogation and they were arrested on Saturday, he said.
Besides, Rameshwar Sonwani (56), who is posted as the headmaster of a government school at Tokapal in Bastar, was apprehended by Raipur police’s cyber cell from Abhanpur area of the state capital when he was trying to escape, he said.
The two other persons arrested are villagers from Dantewada, he said.
“The two villagers had allegedly laid a trap to kill a wild boar, but the tiger, around three years old, accidentally fell into it and died. They later gave the tiger skin to the arrested police and government employees,” the official said.
The forest department has registered a case under provisions of the Wildlife Protection Act, he said, adding that further probe is underway.