A blackbuck, also known as the Indian antelope, was killed allegedly by three people after they found it grazing on their agriculture fields in Bhojipura area in Bareilly district.
The accused, after killing the blackbuck on Tuesday evening, dumped the carcass in a field to hushup the matter, but a local informed the Forest Department.
The accused have been booked under the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act and the Wildlife Protection Act.
Forest officials, on Wednesday, sent the carcass to the Indian Veterinary Research Institute (IVRI) here for the autopsy. The report is awaited.
Divisional Forest Officer (DFO) Bharat Lal said: “A rope tied around the blackbuck’s neck like cattle suggests that it was first held captive by someone. After the animal broke free from captivity, it entered the crop field when the accused managed to catch and killed it. Normally, it is very difficult to catch a blackbuck.”
He further said, “We are waiting for the autopsy report to confirm the exact reason for its death. We have registered an FIR against the three accused and efforts are on to arrest them,” said the DFO.
The blackbuck is a Schedule-I animal, which ensures the maximum legal protection for wild animals, and holding such animals captive is a crime under law.