Artefacts made of elephant tusks worth Rs 10 lakh seized, duo held
4 October 2017

India: Two handmade artefacts made from the tusks of elephants and worth Rs 10 lakh were seized from two youngsters from Pune district, who had come to the city in search of buyers.

Police said Nilesh Nanavare and Ajinkya Bagal were arrested from the main gate of Unnati Greens Society at Ghodbunder Road and their body search revealed that they were carrying two pieces of intricately designed artefacts made from banned elephant tusks.

The duo is believed to be daily wage labourers from Manchar, a village in Ambegaon taluka in Pune and had travelled all the way to Thane to sell the artefacts.

Senior inspector of Kasarwadavli police station, D S Dhole, said, "During our investigation, the two revealed that they had purchased the artefacts in Manchar around five years ago. All these years, the accused kept the items hidden somewhere in the corner of their loft in their homes. The duo often bragged about their possession to the villagers. One day, someone gave them the idea that selling the ivory products would fetch them good money, probably in crores. Nanavare and Bagal tried to sell the items in the nearby areas but with no luck. Hence, they decided to come to Mumbai. We got a tip off about the men entering the city."

With the arrest of the two men, the police also seized ivory weighing roughly around 2.89 kilograms.

The men have been booked under Section 9 (prohibition of hunting), Section 39 (hurting wild animals, which are government property), Section 44 (carrying out dealings in animal articles without license), Section 48(a) (transportation of wildlife), Section 49 (purchase of captive animal) and Section 51 of the Wildlife Protection Act of 1972.

(Source: Times of India)