Bhubaneswar, Dec 15 (PTI) The National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA) has urged the Odisha government to take strong action against erring officials of Satkosia Tiger Reserve for the recent death of a male tiger translocated from Madhya Pradesh.
The carcass of the 3-year-old Royal Bengal Tiger was found on November 14 and central agencies and the state forest department differ on the reason of the big cat’s death.
“From the field inspection, it is evident that the death of T-1 (the deceased tiger) took place due to poaching and the concerned authorities have not yet proceeded with logical investigation. There have been attempts to conceal factors behind its death,” NTCA’s Assistant Inspector General Dr Vaibhav C Mathur wrote to the Principal Chief Conservator of Forest (wildlife) & Chief Wildlife Warden, Odisha.
A joint inspection team of the NTCA and the Wildlife Institute of India (WII) in its report has said the tiger died after falling into a trap laid by poachers.
The report is at variance with the state government’s claim that the big cat named “Mahavir” died after killing a porcupine, the spine of which was found in its stomach during post-mortem.
In the letter, the NTCA said, “This warrants serious action against all concerned. Immediate action should be initiated against those responsible as it has resulted in embarrassment and the keeping the project in abeyance.” The state forest department is silent on the issue though the letter was sent on December 11.
“I cannot say anything now. I am on leave,” said a senior forest department officer.
The report of the joint team of the NTCA and the WII, said “Mahavir” had suffered deep wounds around its neck while trying to escape from a trap laid by poachers for catching wild boar.
The big cat died due to multi-organ failure as the wound had led to an infection, which, in turn, had led to sepsis, it added.
Suvendu Mallik, the honorary wildlife warden, Khura, demanded action against the field director of Satkosia Tiger Reserve.
Mallik also expressed doubt on the procedure followed to conduct the postmortem examination of the carcass.
A pair of Royal Bengal Tiger, a male and a female, was brought under state translocation programme in
June this year. As part of the programme, six tigers were to be brought to Odisha from Madhya Pradesh.
“Mahavir” was brought from the Kanha National Park in Madhya Pradesh on June 20.
This is published unedited from the PTI feed.