Talking to TOI, additional principal chief conservator of forest, R K Mehtolia, said that they suspect it to be a case of poaching. “Since the horn is missing we suspect the animal was poached. This rhino had sneaked into Mahananda from Gorumara in 2010. This was the only rhino found in Mahananda sanctuary. We are taking the help of local cops to solve the case,” he said.
According to him, another rhino that had moved out of Gorumara in the same year is roaming in the forests of Baikunthapur. Interestingly, the incident took place only a day after a ‘save-rhino meet’ was held at Jaldapara. Experts discussed on challenges such as inbreeding among the animals and poaching of the animals.
Earlier in January 2015, carcasses of three rhinos were found in Jaldapara. Though it could not be confirmed whether the animals were poached. In February this year, another rhino carcass was found with its horn missing from the Torsha east camp in Jaldapara.