Smuggler arrested from Odisha

Kendrapara (Odisha): Bhitarkanika National Park authorities have arrested a man on charges of smuggling forest produce from the protected mangroves near Mahakalpada in Kendrapara district.

Over four quintal of seeds of mangrove species was seized from the possession of the man identified as Seikh Ali Mohammad (52). The accused from East Midnapore district of West Bengal was smuggling out the seeds to Kolkata, said Manoj Kumar Mahapatra, Divisional Forest Officer of Rajnagar Mangrove (wildlife).

The seeds are much in demand for the making of miniature toys for household decoration, he said. The racket thrived with the support of locals. The seeds collected by locals from the forest areas were being procured by the accused during the periodic visit to the place, officials said.