Dilip Kumar

Baripada: A team of forest officials seized eight ivories weighing around 45 kg and arrested two poachers from Angarapada village under Udala forest range here in Mayurbhanj district.

The team conducted raids at the village in the guise of customers and nabbed Paghuram Hansda and Ramachandra Hansda allegedly involved in several elephant poaching cases.

"We have laid a trap and caught two persons pretending as buyers. We made a deal with them to buy 8 pieces of ivory at Rs 18 lakh," an official said.

Both have confessed to the crime during interrogation, official said.

Two elephants were poached in Udala and Kaptipada range a few days ago. Investigation will be conducted whether the ivories are that of these poached elephants, Divisional Forest Officer (DFO) Santosh Kumar Joshi said.

"A team led the by the Assisatnt Conservation of Forest (ACP) had been formed following an elephant poaching incident that took place on February 6. The team was investigating the case. During the course of investigation, we got some vital clue and carried out raids accordingly," Joshi added.

The weight of the seized ivories is 44.9. These will be sent it to the Wild Life Institute of India (WII) in Dehradun for chemical examination, the DFO said.