[QODLink]
Central & South Asia

India customs seize 10,000 turtles in luggage

Two passengers arrested at Kolkata international airport, suspected of smuggling live reptiles from China to Singapore.

Last Modified: 19 Jul 2013 06:07
Email Article
Print Article
Share article
Send Feedback
Nearly all species of sea turtle are classified as endangered, according to World Wildlife Fund [Reuters]

Custom officers at an Indian airport have found more than 10,000 live turtles in suitcases and arrested the two passengers suspected of trying to smuggle the reptiles from China to Singapore.

Authorities at the Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose International airport in the eastern city of Kolkata said the two detained on Thursday were Indian nationals.

"10,043 numbers of exotic varieties of the turtles have been seized from two passengers, residents of Chennai, who were coming from China to Singapore, and landed at Kolkata airport," said assistant commissioner of Airport Customs, Nabnit Kumar.

Nearly all species of sea turtle are classified as endangered, according to World Wildlife Fund (WWF).

Human activities have imposed a threat of extinction on several species of turtles. Increasing pollution, drainage of wetlands and commercial development tend to destroy the habitats and nesting sites of turtles.

WWF says that turtles suffer from poaching, are slaughtered for their eggs, meat, skin and shells, and fall prey to over-exploitation.

Officials said an investigation had been launched into the attempted smuggling case.

168

Source:
Reuters
Email Article
Print Article
Share article
Send Feedback
Topics in this article
Country
Organisation
Featured on Al Jazeera
Swathes of the British electorate continue to show discontent with all things European, including immigration.
Astronomers have captured images of primordial galaxies that helped light up the cosmos after the Big Bang.
Critics assail British photographer's portrayal of indigenous people, but he says he's highlighting their plight.
As Western stars re-release 1980s charity hit, many Africans say it's a demeaning relic that can do more harm than good.
Featured
No one convicted after 58 people gunned down in cold blood in 2009 in the country's worst political mass killing.
While hosting the World Internet Conference, China tries Tiananmen activist for leaking 'state secrets' to US website.
Once staunchly anti-immigrant, some observers say the conservative US state could lead the way in documenting migrants.
NGOs say women without formal documentation are being imprisoned after giving birth in Malaysia.
Public stripping and assault of woman and rival protests thereafter highlight Kenya's gender-relations divide.