Illegal trafficking of wild animals in India


  • Between 2018 and 2020 about 2054 cases were registered for killing or illegal trafficking of wild animals in India.

Key Findings

  • In the three years about 3836 accused were arrested for the crime.
  • The number of cases registered in the year 2018 was 648 and 1099 persons were arrested, followed by 805 cases and 1506 arrests in 2019 and 601 cases and 1231 arrests in 2020.

    Illegal trafficking of wild animals in India
    Credit: V. Sreenivasa Murthy
  • The data was made available on the basis of cases registered by the Wildlife Crime Control Bureau and State Forest and Police Authorities in the past three years.

Ministry of Environment Forest and Climate Change conducted number of species-specific enforcement operations with coordination of State Enforcement Agencies:

  1. Operation Save Kurma-focus on the poaching, transportation and illegal trade of live turtles and tortoises.
  2. Operation Turtshield-tackle the illegal trade of live turtles
  3. Operation Lesknow-gain attention of enforcement agencies towards the illegal wildlife trade in lesser-known species of wildlife.
  4. Operation Clean Art-attention of enforcement agencies towards illegal wildlife trade in Mongoose
  5. Operation Softgold-To Tackle Shahtoosh Shawl (made from Chiru wool) illegal trade and to spread awareness among the weavers and traders engaged
  6. Operation Birbil-To curb illegal trade in wild cat and wild bird species
  7. Operation Wildnet-to draw the attention of the enforcement agencies within the country to focus their attention on the ever increasing illegal wildlife trade over internet using social media platforms.
  8. Operation Freefly-illegal trade of live birds
  9. Operation Wetmark-to ensure prohibition of sale of meat of wild animals in wet markets across the country

Source: TH

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