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Wildlife trade, arms smuggling racket busted at ex-Colonel’s home

MEERUT: A raid at the Meerut house of a retired Colonel, who is a 1971 war and Operation Blue Star veteran, and his national-level shooter son has unearthed Rs 1 crore in cash, arms and ammunition as well as animal skins, parts and meat, pointing to a poaching and arms smuggling racket.

44 guns- many sophisticated foreign-made weapons- 50,000 cartridges, leopard and blackbuck skins, eight deer skulls with antlers, other animal parts and 117.5 kg of meat, presumably of nilgai, were seized from their Civil Lines house.

The 17-hour-long raid was carried out jointly by the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI), wildlife department and local police. A case has been registered by the forest department against shooter Prashant Bishnoi and his father Col (retired) Devendra Kumar Bishnoi, but no arrests have been made so far.

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