Pune DRI seizes 19 exotic birds

Sushant Ranjan
Tuesday, 9 October 2018

“DRI has been working on combating wildlife smuggling apart from combating various other types of cross-border crimes,” said a DRI official.

PUNE: The Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI), Pune unit has recovered 19 illegally imported foreign exotic birds from the premises of Dominic Sequira, a resident of Wadgaon Sheri. On the basis of specific information, the unit, with the assistance of officers of Pune Customs Commissionerate, took the action on Monday.

On inspection, the foreign exotic birds were identified as 15 birds of species Agapornis (Lovebirds) of African origin, a bird of species Sun Parakeet also known as Sun Conure of South American origin, 2 Great Billed Parrot of Phillipines origin and a White Cockatoo of Indonesian origin.

“DRI has been working on combating wildlife smuggling apart from combating various other types of cross-border crimes,” said a DRI official.

“Towards this objective, intelligence developed by it indicated that exotic birds and animals of foreign origin are being smuggled into India,” added the official of DRI.

“All seized animals and birds have been handed over to Rajiv Gandhi Zoological Park authorities for safe custody. The value of the above mentioned live exotic birds is very high as these smuggled birds are sold in the markets illegally. All these birds appear to have been illegally imported into India without declaration or through illicit routes making their import into India liable to confiscation in terms of Section 111 of the Customs Act. 

In addition, sections 48 and 49 of the Wild Life Protection Act, 1972 prohibits trade or commerce in wild animals or animal articles or trophies,” said a DRI officer.

Further, illegal import of wildlife is in violation of the Wild Life Protection Act and automatically becomes a violation of the Customs Act by virtue of Section 111(d) of the Customs Act.

In concurrent operation by DRI, Kolkata, seizures of 35 exotic birds were made in Kolkata. 

DRI is committed to combating wildlife crime including cross-border crime such as trafficking in wildlife products and artefacts. DRI has been regularly making seizures of wildlife articles such as Red Sanders wood, a CITES-listed species of timber, highly-valued in the markets of China and East Asia, Star Tortoises and other species of turtles, deer antlers, tiger and leopard skins.

In September, DRI, Mumbai Zonal Unit made a seizure of about 8,000 kg of shark fins valued at Rs 45 crore in the international market and 523 star tortoises in Mumbai. There is an urgent need to step up the fight against wildlife crime, which has an environmental, social and economic impact and a concerted effort is needed by all law enforcement agencies. DRI welcomes information from the public about any cross-border crime including wildlife crime.

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