The KP Wildlife Department has seized two pairs of snakeskin Peshawari chapals being made as a gift for Prime Minister Imran Khan.
BBC Urdu first reported that the shoes were being made by a shoemaker in Peshawar known as Nooruddin Chacha. The shoes had been commissioned by a man named Noman and the snakeskin sent from America.
Unfortunately, the sale and purchase of snakeskin is illegal under the Wildlife Act, 2015. According to the Act, no one is allowed to possess any wild or exotic animal (dead or alive) without a valid certificate or licence. The gifting, sale or other transfer of any animal is also not allowed under Section 17. The only snakes protected under the Act are pythons, meaning that if the snakeskin used was not of a python, there should be no fine.
The offence carries a minimum fine of Rs5,000 or an imprisonment of one-month or both and a maximum fine of Rs45,000 or two years of jail time or both.
Noman had reportedly commissioned the shoes as an Eid gift for PM Khan.
The KP Wildlife Department raided Nooruddin’s shop in Peshawar soon after the BBC Urdu story was published and seized the shoes. They were taken so that experts could determine exactly what snakeskin was used. A shoemaker was also reportedly taken into custody from the shop.
The shoes were said to cost at least Rs40,000.
No FIR has been registered yet.