Two cow smugglers and a police constable were injured in an exchange of fire in Uttar Pradesh’s Bahraich district on Friday night. The police recovered four cows, a car, and a country-made pistol from the spot.
Police acted on a tip-off
According to the police, they received a tip-off that some cow smugglers were transporting cows in a car from Nepal to Bahraich. A team of police personnel led by SHO Rajesh Kumar Singh of Risia police station set up a check post near the Indo-Nepal border and tried to stop the car.
However, the smugglers did not stop and opened fire at the police. The police retaliated and injured two of the smugglers, while the rest managed to escape. A police constable, Rajesh Yadav, also sustained a bullet injury in his leg.
Injured admitted to hospital
The injured smugglers were identified as Mohammad Aslam and Mohammad Naseem, both residents of Bahraich. They were admitted to the district hospital, where their condition was stated to be stable. The injured constable was also taken to the hospital and later shifted to Lucknow for better treatment.
The police said that the smugglers were wanted in several cases of cow smuggling and theft in the district. They also said that they have launched a search operation to nab the absconding smugglers.
Cow smuggling a menace in UP
Cow smuggling has been a menace in Uttar Pradesh, especially in the border areas with Nepal and Bihar. The state government has taken several steps to curb the illegal trade of cows, which are considered sacred by Hindus.
In 2023, the state government enacted the Uttar Pradesh Prevention of Cow Slaughter Act, which prohibits the slaughter, transport, and sale of cows and their progeny. The act also provides for imprisonment of up to 10 years and a fine of up to Rs 5 lakh for the offenders.
The state police have also set up special teams and check posts to prevent cow smuggling and protect the bovine population. According to the police data, more than 2,000 cases of cow smuggling were registered and over 4,000 smugglers were arrested in 2023.