778 parakeets rescued from smugglers in Lucknow, Ayodhya

The forest department and special task force (STF) rescued 778 parakeets from smugglers in two separate operations conducted in Ayodhya and Lucknow on Wednesday.

lucknow Updated: Nov 30, 2018 12:56 IST
Gaurav Saigal
Gaurav Saigal
Hindustan Times, Lucknow
Parakeets,Smugglers,Ayodhya
Police and forest officials with the rescued parakeets and the arrested bus driver and conductor in Ayodhya.(HT Photo)

The forest department and special task force (STF) rescued 778 parakeets from smugglers in two separate operations conducted in Ayodhya and Lucknow on Wednesday.

In a mid-night operation, forest officials rescued 497 parakeets which were being smuggled from Lucknow to Gorakhpur on the roof top of a state transport department bus.

The operation took place in Tehseenpur in Ayodhya between 12 and 2am on Wednesday night. The bus driver and conductor have been arrested and sent on judicial remand.

“We got a tip-off that parakeets are being taken on a transport bus from Lucknow to Gorakhpur and will be smuggled to Nepal,” said Ravi Kumar Singh, divisional forest officer, Ayodhya.

A team of forest department and police officials stationed themselves at the national highway and started checking buses that came on the route towards Ayodhya.

Till about 2am in the night they stayed on the highway and checked the suspected buses. “We checked 7 to 8 buses and the rescued the birds,” said Singh.

A team of forest department and police officials stationed themselves at the national highway and started checking buses that came on the route towards Ayodhya for illegal smuggling. (HT Photo)

The parakeets are protected under schedule-IV of the Indian Wildlife Protection Act. A parakeet is one of many small to medium-sized species of parrot that generally have long tail feathers.

Besides, 285 parakeets were rescued from Chowk near Akbari Gate in Lucknow on Thursday. Three people Mohd Zaid of Sadatganj in Lucknow and Ramu and Ranjit of Sitapur were arrested for keeping the birds illegally in a net cage. They were hiding them beneath sacks.

“These three used to purchase the birds from hunters in Kheri and Sitapur and used sell to locals. They also sold birds to people in Kolkata and Patna,” said officials.

Three such operations have been conducted in the state in past one week. Besides, 10 turtles were also rescued from smugglers in Munshipulia in Lucknow earlier this week.

First Published: Nov 30, 2018 12:56 IST