UP: Villagers Purposefully Crush Tigress With Tractor, Beat Her With Sticks Until She Bled To Death

Published : 6 Nov 2018 5:51 AM GMT
UP: Villagers Purposefully Crush Tigress With Tractor, Beat Her With Sticks Until She Bled To DeathImage Credit: The Times of India

With animal rights activists protesting the killing of Avni, another tigress was killed by angry locals in Uttar Pradesh’s Dudhwa Tiger Reserve. The tigress was said to have injured a man from the nearby village, as reported by NDTV. This brutal and brazen murder of a majestic beast is also being covered by reputed international media as with each tiger’s death, India’s National Animal inches closer towards extinction.

On November 4, the locals beat up forest guards and took away their sticks. They then ran over the tigress with a tractor and beat it with sticks until it bled out and died. According to forest officials, the angry locals were from a village called Chaltua inside the Dudhwa Reserve. They have been asked to relocate a lot of time but refused as they are heavily dependent on forest resources for survival.

The officials said that the 10-year-old tigress never injured anyone before and only attacked the one person as he intruded inside the forest at his own risk. “The 50-year-old man was mauled as he was going to his village, crisscrossing the jungle. Then some anti-social elements got together and beat the tigress to death. We have identified those responsible and we are going to file an FIR against them and get them arrested,” said Mahavir Kojilangi, director, Dudhwa National Park.

The villagers say that the tigress has been attacking their livestock for the last two weeks and they were terrified. These villagers who live inside the forest reserve had complained to the forest official but to no use. Mailani range forest guard Mohan Ram, who was a witness to the brutal death of our national animal said in his complaint, “They took our tractor and ran it over her. After that, they surrounded her and beat her to death. They also attacked an elephant kept in the village for patrolling, its mahout and other forest department officials. They manhandled the mahout and the officials and held them hostage, before more officials came and freed them…,” reported The Indian Express.

Future of Avni’s cubs

Our country is not only mourning the wrongful death of the tigress in Uttar Pradesh but also the murder of Avni, the tigress from the Yavatmal region of Maharashtra, who was accused of 13 human-killings over the past two years. After nearly three months of launching a search operation, the tigress was cornered and shot dead on Friday night.

Avni was also a mother of two cubs, both 10-months-old. The Logical Indian spoke to AK Mishra, Principal Chief Conservator of Forests, Pandharkhawda, who said, “Avni’s cubs are still in the forest. We have set baits like small goats and pigs around the forest to lure the two cubs. Once they hunt the baits, we will try to capture them.”

He further said that he is not sure what will happen to them after the capture. “Keeping them in a zoo is the least priority. After capture, we will decide whether they would be kept in a reserve or sanctuary.” The cubs are too young to hunt and wildlife conservationists and activists are worried that the cubs would not survive in the wild without their mother.

“It was never our plan to kill. Yes, the order was passed but we still wanted to capture Avni. We fired a tranquilising dart and she charged at us. That is when she had to be shot,” says Mr Mishra. He says that not just the lives of the people staying around the forest were endangered but the forest staff were also worried for their lives as they knew that a ‘man-eater’ was roaming around in the ‘wild’.

The Logical Indian Take

India’s growing population has confined wildlife to the ever-shrinking forests and grasslands. Reports have come out which show that between the years 2014-2017, one person lost his/her life every day because of the man-animal conflict.

The growth of human settlement is considered an economic development, but it is the animals who are paying a heavy price as they are competing with humans for food and shelter. Wildlife experts have said that territorial animals lack space within reserves and their prey also lack enough fodder to survive on. This forces wild animals to move out and venture close to human habitations in search of food.

It is us who are encroaching on their land and taking away their livelihood. It is us who are killing them. Tigers are protected under the Wildlife Conservation act and killing them is a crime. There needs to be more awareness about man-animal conflict and villagers should be taught to handle such situations and not kill the animals altogether.

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