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Saturday, April 13, 2024

229 turtles rescued from Kamakhya Railway station released in Pobitora

On February 5, 235 rare, live turtles were rescued by the RPF, but six of them died before they were handed over to the forest officials


Two Hundred twenty-nine rare turtles, which were recovered from a train at Kamakhya railway station on February 5, were released at Pagladubi beel in Pobitora Wild Life Sanctuary in Assam’s Morigaon district, a senior forest official said, on February 8.

“After four days of observation, the turtles were released at Pagladubi beel at around 4 pm today,” said Rohini Saikia, divisional forest officer (DFO) of Kamrup East Wildlife Division. She, however, added that six turtles died before they were handed over to the forest officials.

Before the turtles were released, the forest officials obtained permission from the court of the chief judicial magistrate of Kamrup and chief wildlife warden, MK Yadava.

Earlier on Saturday, the Railway Protection Force (RPF) had rescued 235 rare, live turtles, mostly Indian flap shell turtles, at the Kamakhya Railway station. The turtles were stacked in 10 bags from two compartments of Dr Ambedkar Nagar Kamakhya Express

Though no person has been arrested in connection with the case, the police registered a case against the unidentified criminals. The turtles were handed over to the Beat Officer (BO) of Khanamukh forest beat under Guwahati Range, Kamrup East Division, for rehabilitation.

The Indian flap shell turtle, found extensively in South Asia, is known for adapting well to drought conditions. Their name comes from their femoral flaps, which cover their limbs when they retract to their shell.

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