Chennai: The international terminal of the Chennai airport on early Wednesday witnessed a new commodity under its list of smuggled items – camel teeth.
Chennai airport customs officials detained four passengers for carrying 150 camel teeth. According to airport sources, the passenger Subash (37) of Karnataka and three of his friends were seen suspicious and were from Karnataka scheduled to board an international flight to Bangkok. Camel teeth of different sizes were found during scanning and they failed to give a proper explanation for carrying the animal parts to a foreign country. They never had any certificates with them for carrying the biological parts, sources said.
At present, the customs department is not clear on which department to rely on for further investigations.
“Camel is not covered under wildlife protection act and we will not be in a position to investigate the matter. But cases can be registered, under animal welfare protection act and this had to be investigated in detail”, opined a forest ranger who is aware of the seizures.
According to foresters, camel tooth is in demand for medicine and also an ornament in Arab countries and this is the first time that camel teeth are being caught at the Chennai airport.
“Two years back there was a similar case in Mumbai airport, where passengers with camel teeth were detained. The teeth are smuggled from Rajasthan and this is the second such informed case, where the ship of the desert is under examination. A lot of investigation and research is now required”, said an Indian forest officer studying poaching trends in India....