Four people namely Rinku Ali, Mridul Choudhury, Sufia Begum and Makib Ali were arrested while they were engaged in snake charming practice in front of SBI, Margherita Branch after being tipped off by Ms. Rijumoni Saikia a student of Natun Parthimic Vidayalaya to a Digboi College Professor Rajib Rudra Taraing who along with his fellow professor Gauri Buragohain and a team of Aaranyak, immediately contacted Digboi Forest Department, who further instructed the Range Officer, Mr. Podum Borpatra Gohain to take stock of the situation on 11’Th April.
Talking to Times of Assam over phone, Mr. Rajib Rudra Taraing informed,” We caught the four red handed and after preliminary investigation the four were arrested by the range office, Margherita Western Range. The gang of four hails from Mukalmara in Nalbari District”. The snake species were identified as Indian Rat Snake Ptyas mucosa size 7 ft long, female more commonly known as Mosuwa Gum in Assamese falls under Schedule II of Indian Wildlife Protection Act (IWLP), 1972 and the Copper Headed Trinket Snake Coelognathus radiatus size 5.7 ft also known as Dhunduli feti which too is protected under Schedule IV of IWLPA, 1972. Moreover the two capture box were too small for the snakes, even the snake’s moulting process had been hampered.
Commercially the charmers had confessed to have made an income of seventeen hundred rupees until caught by alert citizens and that they were involved with snake trade in Assam. The charmers were putting up in a reputed hotel at Margherita which indirectly proves the lucrative reptile and snake market that has the potential to yield high income. All four were produced before the Judicial Court with section 9, 44C, 49D1a of IWLP Act and send to jail.
Through Times of Assam, Mr. Rajib Rudra Tariang has appealed to its esteemed readers: “DEAR VIEWERS, PLEASE DO NOT ALLOW ANY ONE TO CAPTURE ANY INDIAN SPECIES OF WILD ANIMALS OR HARASS NOR MAKE THEM FORCEFULLY PLAY TO ANY AUDIENCE. IT’S TOTALLY ILLEGAL UNDER LAW.”