Over 51kg block of suspected ambergris washes ashore on Kovalam beach
The yellowish-white block had washed up on the beach and was found by locals who informed the fisheries authorities and the police.
The SHO of Kovalam Police Station said that it was thereafter handed over to the forest department officials for scientific analysis.
A senior forest official told PTI that samples of the block have been sent for analysis and only after receiving the results, which could take a week, can it be definitively confirmed that the item recovered was ambergris.
He, however, said that they ''suspect'' that it was ambergris.
On being asked how much such a huge block of ambergris would fetch in the open market, the official said that there was a prohibition on its trade legally and therefore, a price cannot be fixed.
The official said it was the first time that a block of ambergris has washed ashore and till now it has only been seized from the illegal custody of persons engaged in its trade.
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