Wildlife poaching continues unabated

Kathmandu, January 6

Police arrested four persons in possession of a gallbladder of a bear from Bagmati Corridor, Kathmandu-34 on Wednesday.

Those arrested are Santosh Ghale, 24; Purna Bahadru Thani, 28, of Sindhupalchowk; Ram Bahadur Tamang, 32, of Jhapa; and Bam Bahadur Thani, 25, of Dolakha, said Metropolitan Police Office, Ranipokhari.

Investigators informed that gallbladder of bear fetch racketeers up to Rs 20,000 per tola (11.66 gm) in local black market. The gallbladder is believed to break down gallstones and is sold for up to USD 24,000 in international market.

Police officials said musk pods, gall bladder of bear and pangolin scales are often used for preparing traditional medicines and are in high demand in China.

Similarly, tiger hides and body parts of endangered wild animals are smuggled mainly to China for their supposed ‘medicinal value’ and for decoration.

Pangolin scales fetch around 2,500 US dollars per kg in the international market. Pangolin scales are in high demand in Asian markets, especially China, as they are used in manufacturing bulletproof jackets and traditional Chinese medicine, a police source said.

He informed nearly two dozen gallbladder of bears and 60 kilograms of pangolin scales were recovered from different places of Kathmandu Valley in the past four years.

People believe that pangolin scales can increase blood circulation and help mothers produce milk.