Bhawanipatna: A joint team of Forest department personnel from Odisha and Chhattisgarh seized a leopard hide following a raid carried out at Amapani Ghati in Kalahandi district bordering Nabarangpur, today. The team arrested six animal body part traders in this connection.
According to a Forest department source, the joint raid was conducted by personnel from Kalahandi South Division of Odisha and Udanti-Sitanadi Tiger Reserve of neighbouring Chhattisgarh.
Acting on a tip-off that five persons were negotiating with a party to sell the seized leopard hide, the team raided leading to the arrests and seizure. Later, based on the information provided by the accused, the forest personnel again raided the house of one Rishi Majhi. The hunter from Chancharaguda village under Jaypatna forest range was apprehended and a python skin, a country-made firearm, and several other incriminating instruments were seized from his possession.
The three accused from Nabarangpur district and three others from Kalahandi district were forwarded to a local court later in the day, a senior forest official of the raid team said.