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Dhaka Tribune

2 endangered bear cubs rescued in Bandarban, smuggler held

  • Smuggler concealed bears in bag
  • Possibility of relocating cubs to Safari Park
Update : 02 Apr 2024, 04:44 PM

Police in Alikadam upazila of Bandarban have recovered two bear cubs.

At the same time, they arrested a suspect named Alauddin, 24, on charges related to its trafficking.

Bandarban Superintendent of Police Saikat Shaheen provided the information during a press conference held at 11am on Tuesday.

According to the superintendent of police, on information, law enforcement conducted a targeted operation in the Alikadam-Chakaria road area of Shibatali Para within Ward No. 2 of Chaikshyong UP.

During the operation, Alauddin, travelling on a motorcycle along the Alikadam-Chakaria route, was intercepted and found to be in possession of two bear cubs concealed within a bag attached to his motorcycle. He was promptly arrested for his involvement in wildlife trafficking.

A man involved in trafficking bear cubs has been arrested from Alikadam upazila of Bandarban recently. Photo: Dhaka Tribune

Authorities are currently liaising with the forest department regarding the appropriate course of action for the rescued bear cubs.

Discussions are underway regarding the possibility of relocating them to Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Safari Park at Chakaria upazila in Cox's Bazar. Legal proceedings related to this matter are currently underway.

The International Union for Conservation of Nature has classified the Asian black bear as “vulnerable” on its Red List. These bears, found in the forests of Sylhet and Chittagong Hill Tracts of Bangladesh, face severe threats due to habitat loss and food scarcity resulting from continuous deforestation.

For a considerable period, criminal networks have been involved in the smuggling of various endangered wild animals from Lama and Alikadam upazilas of Bandarban, highlighting the ongoing challenge of wildlife preservation in the region.

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