Russell’s Viper Hunt Leads to Python’s Death in Faridpur

Russell's Viper hunt

The people have been thrown into disarray and uncertainty due to the offer of a reward of Tk 50,000 for capturing live Russell’s Vipers along the Padma riverfront. Shah Md Ishtiak Arif, the general secretary of the Faridpur district branch of the Awami League, declared the reward during a speech commemorating the party’s establishment anniversary.

Rezaul Khan, a farmer from Aliabad union, captured a Russell’s Viper and placed it in an aluminium pot in an attempt to earn the reward. In search of recognition, he addressed Ward Councillor Awlad Hossain, who guided him to the nearby forest department. Rezaul’s displeasure intensified as the forest officials refused to take the snake and did not issue any receipt.

According to Divisional Forest Officer Golam Kuddus Bhuiyan, there is no legal provision for capturing these snakes, making it an illegal activity. Regrettably, we are unable to furnish an acknowledgment letter. By Sunday midday, three individuals had made unsuccessful attempts to submit captured snakes, resulting in a disorderly and tumultuous situation.

Regrettably, residents in Chunati union in Chattogram’s Lohagara upazila mistakenly identified and subsequently killed a python measuring 5 feet in length. The residents mistakenly identified the python as a Russell’s Viper, which is commonly referred to as Chandrabora in the nearby area. The occurrence took place in close proximity to a poultry farm at approximately 11:00 PM on Saturday evening.

Mahmood Hasan, a ranger from the Chunati Wildlife Division Office, stated that the python was immediately killed as a result of a misinformation campaign targeting the Russell’s Viper. He emphasised that the act of killing these animals is considered a criminal offence. Additionally, he mentioned, “After retrieving the lifeless body, we proceeded to bury the python.”

Currently, there are ongoing efforts to launch a public awareness campaign with the aim of preventing similar sad situations from occurring again in the future. The current scenario highlights the pressing necessity for precise information and legal certainty for the preservation of animals.

While the community deals with the unanticipated negative outcomes of the reward, authorities stress the significance of following wildlife conservation regulations and minimising avoidable injury to animals.

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Green Time Editorial Body