(AFP) - Indian police are holding a pigeon under armed guard after it was caught on an alleged spy mission for neighboring Pakistan, media reported Friday.
The white-colored bird was found by a local resident in India's Punjab state, which borders Pakistan, and taken to a police station 25 miles from the city of Amritsar.
The pigeon had a ring around its foot and a Pakistani phone number and address stamped on its body in red ink.
Police officer Ramdas Jagjit Singh Chahal told the Press Trust of India (PTI) news agency that they suspected the pigeon landed on Indian soil from Pakistan with a message, although no trace of a note was found.
Officials directed that no one should be allowed to visit the pigeon, which police said was possibly on a "special mission of spying."
The bird was medically examined and kept in an air-conditioned room under police guard.
Senior officers asked to be kept updated on the situation three times a day, PTI reported.
Chahal said local pigeon keepers in the sensitive border area told police that Pakistani pigeons were easily identifiable as they looked different from Indian ones, according to the Indian Express newspaper.