The police on Monday rescued 38 calves from a cargo container truck abandoned near Bundi tunnel on Jaipur-Kota highway, an official said.
Acting on a tip-off by the ‘Gau Raksha Dal’ volunteers, a police team reached the 1,080-meter tunnel on National Highway-54 between Jaipur and Kota and found the truck parked there, said Sub Inspector Ram Prasad Meghwal of the Bundi city police station.
The container truck was found stuffed with 40 young calves, two of which had died of suffocation, he said, adding that all the calves were immediately taken out and were shifted to a nearby cow shelter.
The driver and the helper of the truck had fled after parking the vehicle on Jaipur-end of the tunnel after it was given a chase by some Gau Raksha Dal volunteers, suspecting that the calves were being smuggled.
The volunteers from Tonk district had informed police early Monday that the calves were being smuggled in a long container truck, following which the volunteers from Bundi intercepted the truck and began chasing it from Hindoli area and informed the Bundi police, said Bundi Gau Raksha Dal chief Nitesh Gandhi.
The police seized the truck and sent the rescued calves to a cow shed at Thikerda village near Bundi city, the sub-inspector said.
The police subsequently lodged a case against the truck driver under various sections of the Cow Protection Act, SI Meghwal said, adding the seized truck bore a Jaipur registration number.
The carcass of two calves were sent for postmortem, said the sub-inspector, adding further probe is on into the case.