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Asian Tribune is published by E-LANKA MEDIA(PVT)Ltd. Vol. 20 No. 104

10,000 live turtles seized at Kolkata airport, two Indians arrested

From Gopal Ethiraj
Chennai, 21 July, (Asiantribune.com):

A consignment of about 10,000 live turtles belonging to endangered species was seized at Kolkatta (India) airport on July 18 and two persons were arrested by the Custom Air Intelligent Unit in this connection.

According to the Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose International airport sources, the two Chennai based smugglers were bringing the new born turtles in three bags from Guangzhou (China) to Singapore via Kolkata.

The turtles, numbering 10,043 belonged to 43 exotic varieties, according to a senior wildlife official. The estimated market price of the seized turtles is around Rs. 60 lakhs.

The rescued turtles have been taken to the centre of the wildlife wing of the West Bengal Forest Department in Salt Lake. More than 100 turtles died on way to the centre.

Human activities have become a threat for the extinction of several species of turtles, according to WWF.

Increasing pollution, drainage of wetlands and commercial development tend to destroy the habitats and nesting sites for turtles. They also suffer from poaching and the eggs are hunted for food; the turtles are slaughtered for their meat, skin and shells.

- Asian Tribune -

10,000 live turtles belonging to endangered species
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