A man was arrested for alleged possession of a sand boa snake, also known as ‘mandul’, in the city recently. The accused, Vikas Ramchandra Phadtare (28), was arrested in Katraj at 9 pm on Tuesday after a team from the Pune City Police and forest department officials laid a trap.
A white bag was recovered from him inside which was the snake, police said. The value of the snake has been estimated to be Rs 15 lakh, police said.
According to police, the accused said he found the snake in his farm a few days ago and he was planning to sell it. Phadtare was booked under sections of the Wildlife Protection Act.
Sand boa (Eryx Johnii) is a non-venomous snake protected under Schedule IV of the Wildlife Protection Act, 1972. Its trade is illegal. Sand boas are considered “lucky” because of beliefs that these snake have supernatural powers and possessing them can make a person rich, destroy enemies and find hidden wealth, among other things, police said.
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