Snake Venom Racket: 26 Cobras Rescued, Woman Among 3 Arrested In Odisha’s Balasore

Balasore: In a major crackdown, Forest Department officials on Wednesday rescued 26 cobras and arrested three persons including a woman, for their alleged involvement in illicit trade of venomous snakes at Panchupali area under Baliapal tehsil in Odisha’s Balasore district. 

The alleged inter-state racket was being run by a couple, who were among those apprehended following a raid on their house by officials of Balasore forest division and Snake Helpline, sources said.

According to preliminary investigation, the reptiles were collected from various parts of the state and were being smuggled outside the state after extracting their venom. “We received reliable tip-off about the smuggling of cobras and immediately left Bhubaneswar around 3 am,” secretary of Snake Helpline Suvendu Mallick told a presser.

They reached Balasore at 5 am and along with forest officials carried out the raid. “We rescued 26 cobras which were kept in specially designed plastic containers with holes in them. We suspect involvement of more people in his racket,” he added.

Investigation is on to ascertain involvement of others in the racket, said Balasore Forest Division ACF Sovan Chand.

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