State forest dept to write to NTCA to prepone reintroduction of tigers in Mukundra
Wildlife lovers may be able to see tigers at Mukundra Hill Tiger Reserve in Kota by the year end, with the state forest department planning to write to National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA) urging it to prepone the opening from December 2018 to December 2017.
“We believe Mukundra Tiger Reserve is ready for reintroduction of tigers. A prey base, including sambar deer from army area in Kota and Chital from Jodhpur forest area, is being shifted and for that clearance has been taken from the Central Zoo Authority,” additional chief secretary forest and environment NC Goel said on Sunday.
Goel added that tigers will be put in quarantine for initial acclimatisation. “We will urge National Tiger Conservation Authority to reschedule the reintroduction month of tigers from December 2018 to December 2017.”
“The state government and the chief minister are committed to ensuring protection and conservation of wildlife, and for the same many measures have been taken to strengthen vigilance, which is now giving dividends,” said Goel.
The government had announced Project Leopard, which will be introduced later this year, he said.
He said that the tiger capital of Rajasthan ‘Ranthambore Tiger Reserve’ in Sawai Madhopur has generated revenue of ₹30 crore this year. The funds will be used in constructing boundary wall.
The government has revamped the forest administration of tiger reserves – most posts have been filled and additional district forest officers are being posted for effective monitoring. He added that they have also posted chief conservator of the forest as the field director at all reserves.
Goel said that night patrolling in and around the reserve has been increased which is giving results. On June 16, three people, including two minors, were arrested with the meat of wild pig from Rajgarh area of Alwar.
On June 18, one person had been arrested with sambar deer meat. Cases have been registered under Wildlife Protection Act.
The vigilance mechanism will be further strengthened so that no illegal activity or crime goes unnoticed. The state will soon have video surveillance system (thermal and optical) and use drones for five wildlife areas – Ranthambore, Sariska and Mukundra Tiger Reserves, Jawai Leopard Reserve and Jhalana forest area. A sum of ₹60 crore will be spent on this, he said.
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