NEW DELHI – A pigeon with a tag bearing Chinese numbers has created panic in Anjaw district of Arunachal Pradesh on the Sino-Indian border. Anjaw villagers captured the pigeon on Sunday, Hindustan Times reported.

“We got information that villagers have captured a bird with tags. The forest department has been alerted to find out details,” Mamata Riba, deputy commissioner of Anjaw, told HT on Monday.

According to the newspaper, the pigeon could be a ploy of China to carry out surveillance inside Indian territories, but no such thing was confirmed by officials.

The tag on the bird could be for research purposes, said officials. “Unless ascertained otherwise, we can’t surmise on our own since the nature of tagging is apparently for research. We are waiting for the forest department report,” Riba said.

Last year, Indian police captured a ‘spy pigeon’ they insist was carrying a note threatening Prime Minister Narendra Modi near the country’s heavily-militarised border with Pakistan.

“The BSF found it with a note in Urdu saying something like ‘Modi, we’re not the same people from 1971. Now each and every child is ready to fight against India.'”