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HindustanTimes Wed,30 Jul 2014

Young guns ride to save the big cat

editor@bhopal@hindustantimes.com, Hindustan Times  Indore, May 01, 2013
First Published: 17:20 IST(1/5/2013) | Last Updated: 17:23 IST(1/5/2013)

Riding on the wave of concern about the tiger's future, four young professionals kicked off a motorcycle tour of six tiger reserves on Tuesday. Their aim is to spread awareness about the need to save the big cat from extinction and prevent environmental degradation.

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The tour - termed Save the Tiger, Project Deadline - is expected to last for 45 days. The quartet will thread its way through 48 cities as they travel to the six reserves - Panna, Kanha, Bandhavgarh, Pench, Satpura and Sanjay Dubri.

"Our aim is to save the tiger, protect the environment and help promote ecotourism in the state," said computer animator Aamir Aijaz Siddiqui (33), the brain behind the tour.

Siddiqui says he first got the idea around six months ago but the tour had to be put off due to difficulties in finding sponsors.

In stepped Aleem Rangrezz, a former DD anchor and avid amateur photographer, at 24 the baby of the group. Rangrezz not only chipped in with cash but also in kind, financing the purchase of a video camera that will be used to shoot footage which will be later made into a documentary.

The fact that the other two members, Meghesh Sharma (30) and Harendra Chauhan, also have experience in audio-visual media will help record the tour for posterity.

Chauhan used to work as a third assistant director with Mumbai-based Eros Entertainment but quit his job to join the tour. Sharma on the other hand is a graduate from DAVV’s Electronic Multi-Media Research Centre (EMRC) and has worked as an ad-filmmaker.

And until such time that the documentary sees the light of the day the quartet plans to keep wildlife enthusiasts and nature lovers posted on the tour’s progress on, you guessed it, Facebook.

“We will keep posting updates on a Tiger Diaries page created on Facebook,” said Rangrezz minutes before the group zoomed off on their adventure from Regal Square.


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