LAHORE: The Airport Security Force (ASF) and wildlife department on Tuesday foiled a bid to smuggle nine precious falcons worth more than Rs50 million to Qatar and arrested the accused.
Wildlife Department Punjab Director General (DG) Ayaz Khan said that on a tip-off, a joint team of the wildlife department and ASF carried out a search operation at the Allama Iqbal International Airport, Lahore.
During operation, nine falcons hidden in a black bag owned by a Qatar national Ali Muhammad Al-Sada, were recovered. The accused was leaving for his country via a private airline flight. He was arrested by a vigilance police squad deployed at the airport.
The ASF and wildlife department took the recovered falcons into custody and arrested the culprit. The Wildlife Department has issued a challan to Muhammad-ul-Saada in accordance with the Punjab Wildlife Act 1974, said Khan.
The DG assured that the Punjab Wildlife Department will continue to foil plans that endanger wildlife in the province.
Nearly 5,000 to 6,000 falcons are trapped and smuggled out of Pakistan every year and sold to sheikhs in the Middle East.