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HindustanTimes Thu,25 Dec 2014

To visit Mizoram tiger reserve, book your tickets to UP

Rahul Karmakar, Hindustan Times  Guwahati, November 28, 2012
First Published: 00:15 IST(28/11/2012) | Last Updated: 00:17 IST(28/11/2012)

A reserve in Mizoram for tigers of Bangladesh has strategically shifted north to be serviced by Delhi government buses and by air from Lucknow.

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Sounds confusing? Not if you go by some travel websites.

Dampa Tiger Reserve is in Mizoram’s Mamit district. This 550 sq km low-density tiger habitat 127 km west of state capital Aizawl has a 62 km core area kissing the Bangladesh border. It was established in 1985 for trespassing tigers – residents of adjoining Chittagong Hill Tracts of Bangladesh foraying occasionally into India for prey. Some tigers have begun to stay back. In 2010, Dampa had an estimated five tigers. Earlier this year, DNA analysis of faeces pointed to the presence of three tigers.

“This is because forests in Bangladesh have undergone degradation while the prey base in Dampa has increased due to better conservation,” Mizoram’s chief wildlife warden Laltlanhlua said.

But while the tigers have taken a liking to Dampa, websites mapping protected areas for wildlife packages have virtually taken the tiger reserve out of Mizoram.

One such site, www.wildlifetrips.in, has positioned Dampa only 4km from nearest railway station Dudhwa in UP. The ‘place’ is easily accessible from nearest airport Lucknow and enjoys regular public and private sector buses from New Delhi. Dampa also offers accommodation in huts of Tharu — a north Indian tribe living near jungles — people, according to the site and others.


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