‘Poacher’ Ending Explained & Series Recap: Is Raaz Dead?

The crime series Poacher is currently streaming on Amazon Prime and covers a subject crucial to wildlife conservation. Alia Bhatt has made her debut as an executive producer in the series, backed by the imminent director, Richie Mehta. The story is based on real-life incidents, highlighting Operation Shikar, which received a national award in 2017 for excellence in outstanding wildlife protection measures. The illegal poaching of elephants in Kerala to trade their tusks, also known as ivory, have been shed light on in Poacher. Will Neel be able to uncover the racket for illegal poaching? Why was Mala so eager to catch the poachers? Will Poonam Verma confess to her crimes? Let’s find out!

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Spoilers Ahead


How Did The Police Try To Catch The Poachers?

The Indian amendment to the Wildlife Protection Act in 1991 restricted poaching. Despite the restrictions, illegal poaching had been going on with aid from crime syndicates like the Triads and Yakuza. Aruku, the forest watcher, gave information about poachers to Babu, the division forest officer. He said that Raaz was behind the smuggling of ivory and that his assistants were Poyya and Ivan. When the local police raided Raaz’s place, they did not find him there. It was reported that he had fled to Adimali. When the police went to find him there, he had already fled the place. DFO Adil was disappointed that Raaz was constantly getting out of his reach and suspended some of the officers in the team for not working properly. Meanwhile, another name, Morris Finn, came up in the case, and he was tailed so that he could lead them to Raaz. 

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Chief Wildlife Warden and Field Director, Neel, had contacted Mala to help him with the investigation of the case. He said that there had been no cases of poaching in Kerala after the 1990s, but now the issue has resurfaced, endangering the elephants. Meanwhile, Trivandrum DFO Dina had also been gathering information on the case and eventually managed to arrest Morris. Upon his capture, Morris had been denying all the charges, but when Dina showed him pictures of a receipt for a parcel of 75 kg to Delhi, he confessed to his crimes. He said that he had parceled ivory to Poonam Verma (an art dealer) in Delhi after buying it from Raaz. He further revealed that Ravi Don was the one who directly dealt with the clients. 


Were The Police On The Right Path Of Investigation?

Mala had called Alan Joseph and asked him to keep track of the call logs of poachers. After deep digging, Alan found out that international crime gangs like Yakuza and Triads may be involved in the case. Alan went to Kerala to help Neel with the case and was provided with all the information on suspects like Poonam and Ravi Don. Alan dug into Raaz’s phone log to find more information on the case. Meanwhile, Mala contacted Babu to go to Elanji, as she had found out that Poyya’s relatives were living there. Mala was intent on catching the poachers because her father was an illegal poacher himself. 

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Dina had raided an ivory workshop after Morris had spilled some truth about the case. When she handed over those statues to Neel, he realized that they were sold in Indian markets themselves. Meanwhile, Mala and her team managed to trap one of Poyya’s relatives, Yadu, for work and ask him to call Poyya. When Poyya arrived to meet Yadu, Mala arrested him. Alan, on the other hand, had managed to find out that Morris and Raaz had talked over the phone. The police managed to track Raaz’s phone, and they realized that it had been activated in Peringazha. The police tailed his sister and mistress to find out Raaz’s whereabouts. 


Was Raaz Caught?

Both Raaz’s mistress and sister were taken into custody to get some information about his crimes. His mistress said that he was considered to be a local hero, as for them, what mattered the most was money, and Raaz always had enough money to provide for his family. She misled the police, saying that he was currently at the Goa-Maharashtra border. Upon further interrogation, she also revealed that she had a daughter with him, whom he often came to visit. Later, when Raaz’s nephew Shyam was captured, he said that his uncle was currently in Magdu and would travel by Sagar Express to meet his daughter. When the team raided the train compartment, they couldn’t find Raaz there either. The team in Kerala sent a warrant to the local officer in Magdu, SHO Rodrigues, to search for Raaz. When they went to Mani’s estate (the place where he worked as a plantation farmer), they found Raaz hanging from a tree. The suicide note said that he was under extreme mental stress and, hence, had committed suicide. Mala was, however, convinced that it was not suicide and that someone had killed him to stop exposing their poaching racket. 

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What Happened After The Suspects Were Arrested?

Another suspect Sashi Illampally’s name came up in the case. After he was caught, he said that he was just a farmer and was just focused on looking after his family. However, when the police pressed him further, he said that he had met Morris and sold him some ivory. He said that he had not poached the animals and had gotten the supply from Prabhas, the politician. Sashi told them that he would help them catch Prabhas if they let him go. Sasi helped the police by saying that Prabhas was keen on buying vintage cars. The police set up a trap for Prabhas, making Alan act as a dealer of vintage cars. The police finally managed to get a hold of Prabhas. He told the police that a Munnar gang had been poaching the animals for the past two years. Later, Ivan came and surrendered to the police, as he was tired of running. 


How Did Aruku Help The Police?

Aruku told the police that Poyya approached him to work for them so that he could earn some extra money. They sought Aruku’s help, as he knew the jungle really well. Aruku gave the police details about the way the poachers would hunt. They would set up a camp for 8–10 days and would also deal with illegal weapons to kill animals. He narrated to them how Ivan had once burned his face while checking gunpowder, but Raaz had refused to take him to the hospital. He told them how Raaz was no less than a monster and how he took pride in killing innocent animals. 

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Aruku would help the poachers by showing them elephant trails in the forest. They would climb up on the trees and aim for the elephant’s head. When the majestic animal would collapse, Raaz would cut out its tusks and leave the carcass to rot there. Aruku said that the poachers had killed approximately 18 animals in that forest, threatening Aruku to keep his mouth shut about their crimes. Aruku had tried to warn the local forest officer, Babu, about the poaching, but he turned a deaf ear and said that there had been no cases of poaching in the past 20 years. His negligence had caused a severe loss of habitat and wildlife in the forest. 


How Did Neel Get Information On Ravi Don?

Neel planned for Nagesh to enter Ravi Don’s house as a house painter, so that he could get some information on his whereabouts. Mrs. Don was getting the house painted, as Ravi Don was supposed to return home. Neel had managed to gather the information that Ravi was flying from Doha to Kochi. Neel, along with his team, waited outside the airport to catch Ravi. The police managed to lay their hands on Ravi just as he landed, and later his house was searched. Upon being interrogated, he pointed his fingers at Poonam Verma and said that she was the main player in the game. 

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Did Poonam Get Arrested?

Neel sought to get an arrest warrant for Poonam, but for that, she had to be brought to Kerala from Delhi. When Neel got permission to carry forward with his mission from the magistrate, he went to Delhi along with his team. They sought help from Delhi police, who told them how sensitive the case was and that the ivory dealers had illegally created a market of one trillion dollars. Kerala police, aided by the Delhi police, went to raid Poonam’s house but did not find any original products there. Her warehouse was full of fake artifacts made of plastic. 

Mala, however, tried to lure Poonam, saying that she could help her out of the mess if she was given her cut. Poonam thought that Mala was a corrupt official and told her that she would give her all the financial aid if she helped her. Poonam was later taken in for an investigation, and they requested the magistrate accept Poonam into the state without a transit warrant. Poonam realized that Mala had been trying to play a game with her so that she would cooperate, and therefore, to avoid her arrest, Poonam feigned unconsciousness. After they got the permit, Poonam was dragged to Kerala, where she was arrested on suspicion of ivory dealing. 

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Did The Police Find The Hidden Ivory?

After Mala missed the flight to Kerala, she took a connecting flight to Coimbatore and then took a car from there to reach Kerala. When they interrogated Poonam, she initially tried to deny the charges, but when the police found out that even her daughter was involved in her business, they threatened to frame her. Poonam then said that her husband had some stock of ivory in their old house in Delhi. She gave them the address to the safe and said that her husband had the key to the safe. When the police reached the flat, they found several kilos of raw ivory stored in boxes. The police found out there were more than 360 kilos of ivory in that room. 


How Did The Police Handle The Mob And Media?

As the police were at work, a crowd had already started gathering outside the flat, and people from the media also came in to gather information on the case. People thought that gold was being discovered in the house, but only the police knew that the house contained ivory, which was worth more than gold. When the police started loading the vans with the boxes, the crowd became uncontrollable. Some people started attacking the van, thinking that the Kerala police had been taking away something very valuable from their state. However, with aid from Delhi police, they were finally able to reach the airport and load all the boxes into the aircraft on time. 

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After Neel and his team reached Kerala, they immediately went to the magistrate to seek permission for an exclusive interview, unveiling the case. During the interview, the police revealed that many elephants had been killed as a result of an illegal poaching racket operating freely. They ensured that stricter measures would be taken to maintain security in the forest. The police also announced that they were to burn the ivory so as to put an end to the illegal ivory supply all over the country. 


Why Were The Police Unable To Trace The Customers?

When Mala told Neel that they would now have to trace the customers, he told him that it would be next to impossible. He said that he had gotten the names of some of the customers from Ravi Don, but they were some of the richest industrialists who had their reach in the Middle East and Europe. It was an international matter, and hence even the CBI or the RAW wouldn’t be able to help in catching them, as some of the buyers directly influenced the government. 

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What Can Happen Next?

Even though the case had been resolved, no one would be able to take the forest out of the hearts of the police officials who had fought for it. The next season of Poacher is likely to bring out the next battle of Mala, where she will try to locate the buyers of the ivory. She will not just sit quietly and will surely try to go to any lengths to protect the wildlife. The way natural resources are depleting is a matter of serious concern. It is our duty to ensure that we preserve wildlife so that an ecological balance is maintained. The series Poacher gives out a social message, helping us ruminate over the decisions that we make to help restore our environment. 


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Debjyoti Dey
Debjyoti Dey
Debjyoti’s obsession with creativity and travel fervor has helped her branch out into the entertainment genre. Her love for psychological thrillers helps her get a daily dose of adrenaline. A regular caricature of the films and its characters is what keeps her going!

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