KARWAR: Five men who went hunting ended up shooting a member of their own group mistaking him for a wild animal in Mundgod taluk, exposing the poaching incidents going on in the forest areas here.
Police said Suleman, Mukkamal, Ahmed, Ismail and Mustaq, all businessmen and residents of Malagi village, had gone hunting in a forest area under the cover of darkness. One of them, Mustaq, separated from the group and started looking for animals on his own.
Hearing the rustling of leaves nearby, the poachers fired in the dark thinking it was an animal. However on hearing Mustaq's screams, they realised their mistake and rushed him to a hospital in Hubballi. He was injured badly in the chest.
According to Basavaraj Mabanur, Sub Inspector, Mundgod, the incident occurred in the early hours of Monday at around 1.30 am. “They brought their injured companion to the local hospital first from where the police got the information. All of them have been arrested,” he said.
According to the police, the accused were trying to convince the doctors that he got injured by mistake, but one of them spilled the beans.
The Mundgod Police has registered a complaint in this connection. Police have seized a country made gun used by the poachers.
However, Gopala Krishna, Deputy Conservator of Forests (DCF), Yellapur said that none of these people arrested by police are listed as poachers. When questioned about the action to be taken to prevent such incidents, the DCF said the police can also book people under the Wildlife Act. “They will take necessary action,” he said.