Pune: Loud purring alerts cops to leopard cubs being smuggled

Updated: May 21, 2019, 09:40 IST | Chaitraly Deshmukh | Mumbai

Investigating officer, Assistant Police Inspector Dattatray Darade of Rajgad police station

A routine nakabandi by the Raigad police led to the discovery of two leopard cubs being smuggled from Bengaluru to Pune. It was the purring of the cubs that first alerted the cops to something amiss. The accused have been identified as Munna Habib Sayyed, 31, Shirur Irfaz Shaikh, 33, from Kondhwa, Pune, and Ayaz Pathan, 40, from Ghorpadi Peth in Pune.

Investigating officer, Assistant Police Inspector Dattatray Darade of Rajgad police station, said, "On Monday, around 10 am, we were inspecting the papers of a vehicle near Khedshivapur toll naka. Suddenly, we heard some loud purring sounds coming from inside. When we checked, we found two leopard cubs in a basket."

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He added, "We immediately took the vehicle keys and alerted the forest department. The gang had brought the two cubs from Bangalore. The two leopards, one male and the other female, are one to two months old. They had planned to bring the cubs to Pune and later strike a deal along the Pune-Mumbai road. The cubs were to be send abroad later. It's a case of smuggling."

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API Darade said, "Both the cubs were bought for Rs 60,000 in Bangalore from someone who said he had got the cubs from a forest near the city. The cubs are now with the forest department in Pune."

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