Poachers kill a rhino in Assam’s Manas national park

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Guwahati, May 6 (IANS) After a gap of over two years, poachers have managed to kill an one-horned rhino in Assam’s Manas national park, officials said on Friday.

“The forest guards here spotted a rhino carcass on Friday morning from the Bhuyapara forest range of the park. The horn of the rhino was missing indicating it to be a case of poaching,” said a senior park official, adding it seemed the killing occurred either last night or early Friday.

Poachers had killed four one-horned rhinos in the park in 2013, but since then there had been no poaching.

The UNESCO declared the park as a World Heritage site in 1985, but enlisted it as a World Heritage Site in Danger in 1992 after reports of severe poaching and insurgent activities in the park.

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The park had also lost all its one-horned rhino population during this period. It however managed to get back its World Heritage site status in 2008, and one-horned rhinos were brought to the park from Kaziranga national park in 2010-11 as part of Assam government’s ambitious Indian Rhino Vision (IRV) 2020 project aiming at having at least 3,000 one-horned rhinos in the state by 2020.

At present there are about 30 one-horned rhinos in Manas national park.

Poachers have already killed eight one-horned rhinos in Kaziranga national park since January this year.



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