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Adult female rhino killed by poachers in Kaziranga

 A rhino and a poacher were killed in Kaziranga National Park in Assam on Sunday. A female adult rhino was shot dead and its horn sawed off by six poachers near Debeswari Camp in Agratoli Range of the World Heritage Site, Forest Department officials said, taking the toll of rhinos killed to 11 this year and three so far this month.


In an encounter that ensued, one poacher was killed by forest guards who are still on the hunt for the others, believed to be hiding in the jungles of the Park. Hearing gun shots early today, KNP personnel launched a search operation and recovered the carcass of the rhino with its horn removed, officials said. The gang of illegal hunters exchanged fire with the park personnel and one poacher, Ganesh Mili (27) was killed, they said.


On searching the area, the sawed off horn, 14 empty cartridges, an axe and some food items were recovered, sources said. The poachers, who had entered the park through its northern bank of Brahmaputra river, were suspected to be hiding in its jungles, they said, adding, the area has been cordoned off to track them out. On May 5, an adult female rhino was killed and its horn taken away from Bagori Range of KNP. On May 2, a male adult pachyderm was gunned down and its horn taken away by poachers near Arikati camp, under Agaratoli Range.


This was close on the heels of another Pride of Assam falling to poachers bullets in Kaziranga National Park on April 30 and its horn taken away from near Borgung Camp on the western side of Burapahar Range of the Park. On March 19, another rhino was killed and its horn taken away in Kohora Range of KNP.


Times of India, Delhi, Monday 19th May 2014