Bhagalpur, Feb. 19: The administration has stepped up vigil against poachers to save migratory birds at the eco-friendly Gangetic diara in the district.
The diara (sandbar) is considered a green belt and was in the news recently when the residents of Dharhara, a village in the riverine area, decided to celebrate the birth of a girl by planting saplings. But there are places in the Naugachia sub-division where many people earn their livelihood by catching and selling migratory birds. These areas fall in the 63km-stretch between Sultanganj and Kahalgaon.
The administration’s bid to check poaching paid off on Saturday when a team of Naugachia sub-division officials caught six poachers and found 48 migratory birds on them.
“I had asked my officials to step up the vigil on such illegal activities. I had also told them not to divulge our plan to anybody,” district magistrate Narmadeshwar Lal said.
He said the officials posed as prospective buyers and approached some poachers at Birbanna village under Narayanpur block. Though the poachers demanded Rs 1,600 for a pair of birds, they finally agreed to sell them for Rs 1,000.
Naugachia sub-divisional officer Sushil Kumar said: “They handed me 48 birds that they had caught. It was then that the officials arrested the six poachers.”
Indian Bird Conservation Network and Wetlands International State co-ordinator Arvind Mishra said all the birds recovered were protected under Wildlife Protection Act, 1972.