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Siliguri: The forest officials in Jalpaiguri have seized a cache of painting brushes made of endangered mongoose hair from a shop and have arrested a man for this.

Raju Sarkar, an additional DFO at Gorumara Wildlife Division, said that recently they got a tip-off that an office stationery shop in Jalpaiguri town was selling painting brushes made of endangered mongoose hair.

Since mongoose is included in Part-II schedule for animal protection and harming or exploiting it in any manner is prohibited by law, the foresters decided to verify the complaint.

Accordingly, a team led by Sarkar yesterday raided the concerned shop, Jalpaiguri Paper Agency located at DBC Road. This led to the seizure of 1,100 painting brushes in which mongoose hair have been used.

“We have arrested an employee who has been working at the shop for over three decades now. The owner has not been acted against as she happens to be a school teacher who stays away from the affairs of the shop and her father had passed the ownership only last year,” Sarkar told reporters today.

The arrested employee has told the foresters that a supplier from Kolkata used to personally deliver the painting brushes at the shop and this had been going on for several years now. Foresters are now trying to locate the manufacturer of the painting brush that comes with the branding “Souha Special.”

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