There will be four zonal units, including one in Chennai
The State-level Wildlife Crime Control Bureau, which the Forest Department is to constitute, will be a multi-agency body and the first of its kind in any State in the country.
Principal Chief Conservator of Forests and Chief Wildlife Warden Shekhar Kumar Niraj said the body would have officers on board from the Police and the Customs departments.
“The bureau will address all cases related to wildlife and timber. It will be equipped with modern tools and equipment for intelligence collection, processing and crime investigations,” said Mr. Niraj, who formerly headed TRAFFIC India, a wildlife trade monitoring network of the IUCN and WWF.
He said the bureau would be a professional body with a fair amount of independence. It would be free to coordinate with other agencies in the country. According to him, the State-level bureau will also coordinate with the Wildlife Crime Control Bureau of the Union Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change. It will have sniffer dog squads at its command to detect wildlife articles.
As per the current plan, the department will set up four zonal units in Chennai, Coimbatore, Tiruchi and Ramanathapuram or Thoothukudi, to cover places with forests and coastal areas.
The bureau will have a tough task of preventing and detecting crimes, ranging from felling and smuggling of sandalwood trees to trafficking of marine species, including sea cucumber.
Source: Read Full Article