A "criminal network" allegedly behind the poaching of peacocks and export of peacock feathers illegally to China will be investigated by the CBI.
The CBI filed a case after customs authorities in New Delhi seized a consignment of 77 packages that had 2,565 kg of peacock tail feathers. The feathers are worth Rs 5.25 crore.
The consignment was shipped in the name of "plastic flexible pipes" by M/s Galaxy Rider to recipients in China, said CBI sources.
Investigations reveal that 26 such consignments were sent to China, using the same MO, between September and February.
A case has been filed against Ayaz Ahmed, director of M/s Galaxy Rider, and others who are unnamed, under the Wildlife Protection Act. Other charges include criminal conspiracy and cheating.
The export of peacock feathers is not permitted.
"The seized/exported peacock tail feathers includes feathers plucked by way of poaching of peacocks and it is a part of a huge criminal network. Without poaching or hunting, it is not possible to acquire such huge consignments of feathers," sources in the investigating agency told NDTV.