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4 get 3-yr jail for poaching tiger 



Vivek Deshpande

Indian Express, Sunday , Mar 21, 2010 at 0149 hrs

Nagpur : In only the second case of its kind in the state and the first in Vidarbha, four persons were convicted in a tiger poaching case on Saturday by the Judicial Magistrate First Class (JMFC) court of Sakoli, Bhandara.

JMFC, AR Surve, sentenced Chandkiran Kodape, Tarachand Soyam, Sampat Soyam and Shiva Pingare to three years in jail and imposed a fine of Rs 10,000 on them for poisoning a tiger on September 29, 1992, near Nagzira Wildlife Sanctuary.

The tiger had killed a cow and the accused had poisoned the carcass later using the chemical Thimet.

Range Forest Officer (RFO) Pradip Kottewar had investigated the case and seized the tiger skin from the accused. Assistant Conservator of Forest (Wildlife) Kishore Mishrikotkar pushed the case to bring about the conviction.

Assistant Public Prosecutor H P Randive said, “In the absence of efforts by forest officers like Kottewar and Mishrikotkar, it’s difficult to get convictions. Most of the time, officers are transferred and not available to attend proceedings...”

“Maharashtra doesn’t have dedicated green courts like MP where conviction rate is higher...,” said wildlife crime expert Nitin Desai, Central India director of Wildlife Protection Society of India.

Randive said the first conviction for tiger poaching in the state was in Thane.


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