The body of a rhino poacher who escaped police custody was found floating in the Brahmaputra River in Assam, reports emerged on Sunday.
According to sources, the poacher, identified as Saidul Islam, escaped police custody on Friday while he was taken to Bagori range of Kaziranga National Park to locate the rhino carcass that was killed and his horn was stolen.
Saidul was a resident of Lahorighat in Nagaon district.
Last Friday, the Special Task Force (STF) of the Assam Police had launched an operation against a group of four rhino horn poachers in the Batadrava locality in Nagaon.
During the operation, the task force had apprehended one poacher, identified as Saidul Islam, and seized one rhino horn weighing 750 gram from his possession while the other three fled the scene.
The STF team then headed to the Bagori range of Kaziranga National Park with Saidul to locate the rhino carcass, but taking advantage of the darkness, the defendant managed to escape.
It was learnt that the group of poachers had bought the rhino horn to sell it in the Shantipur market of Batadrava.
As per reports, the other three poachers had also managed to escape from the spot.
Earlier, the Nagaon Police opened fire targeting one of the poachers from the group while he was trying to escape from the spot.
The poacher was identified as Hatem Ali.
Meanwhile, a search operation has been conducted by the STF team to apprehend all the four poachers.