Shocking! Bengal monitor lizard gang-raped, 4 held
Bhubaneswar: In a shocking incident, a Bengal lizard has been allegedly gang-raped in the Sahyadri Tiger Reserve near Gothane village under Ratnagiri district in Maharashtra and four accused have been held in this connection.
The accused criminals have been identified as Sandeep Tukram, Pawar Mangesh, Janardhan Kamtekar, and Akshay Sunil.
Reportedly, the four accused were held while attempting to enter the restricted zone of Chandoli National Park, which falls under the Sahyadri Tiger Reserve (STR), in the Sangli district for hunting. The forest officials also found a gun in their possession.
The matter of the Bengal lizard gang-rape came to light while checking their mobile phones. The forest department officials found a video recording on one of the phones of the four accused where the footage showed the accused persons gang-raping the monitor lizard.
Thereafter, the forest officials posted at Sangli forest reserve immediately inspected the CCTV footage of the area and found the presence of these four accused in the forest.
Notably, the field director of Sahyadri Tiger Reserve (STR) informed that the four accused have been booked under various sections of the Wild Life (Protection) Act, 1972.
It is pertinent to mention that the Bengal monitor lizard is a reserved species under the Wildlife Protection Act 1972. Hence, if convicted, the accused could be charged with seven years of imprisonment.