Four turtles holed up in 'jail' since 2015 for being evidence in black magic case

A Bilaspur-based wildlife activist questioned the decision to restrict their freedom so that the law could take its own course.

Published: 27th July 2019 05:20 PM  |   Last Updated: 27th July 2019 05:20 PM   |  A+A-

Image used for representational purpose only


RAJNANDGAON: Thanks to the turtle-like pace of the criminal justice system, four turtles are living in watery imprisonment in Chhattisgarh's Rajnandgaon district for the last four years.

These amphibians, who form evidence in a case under the Wildlife Protection Act, 1972, are in the custody of the forest department since 2015.

Six persons were arrested and turtles were recovered from their possession in Basantpur police station limits in the district in 2015.

Rajesh Sahu, Station House Officer, Basantpur, said under the Wildlife Protection Act, capture, possession, consumption or trade of turtles is illegal.

The accused were going to use the turtles for black magic rituals as they are believed to bring good luck and wealth, he said.

After a charge sheet was filed, the court directed that the forest department should take care of the turtles till the trial is over as they form evidence, Sahu said.

The accused were later released on bail.

"The turtles have been kept in an aquarium in a forest depot at Rajnandgaon," said Divisional Forest Officer Pankaj Rajput. "As soon as we get permission from the court, they will be released into their natural habitat," he added.

Mansoor Khan, a Bilaspur-based wildlife activist, questioned the decision to restrict their freedom so that the law could take its own course.

"The forest department should seek the court's permission to release the turtles in their natural habitat. It does not make sense to keep them in captivity when the accused are roaming free," he said.

Stay up to date on all the latest Nation news with The New Indian Express App. Download now


Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp