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Monday, April 30, 2012

Tiger conservation body member calls for heightened surveillance to prevent poaching

TNN | Apr 29, 2012, 01.54AM IST CHANDRAPUR: National Tiger Conservation Authority member-secretary Rajesh Gopal visited the tiger poaching site at Palasgaon range on Saturday. Terming the incident as unfortunate, he instructed officials to enhance surveillance and strengthen intelligence gathering to prevent such incidents in the future. A sub-adult tiger died while a full-grown one was injured after getting stuck in traps laid by poachers on Thursday. Gopal was received by APCCF (wildlife) AK Saxena and CCF, TATR, Vinaykumar Sinha in Chimur. After inspection of the site, Gopal also held a meeting with forest department officials. "Gopal revealed some intelligence information he had regarding poaching and asked for enhancement of vigilance," said Sinha. Saxena claimed that Gopal had called for strengthening of surveillance in jungles, particularly at vulnerable spots. "He claimed similar poaching attempts were happening elsewhere in the country. He stressed on complete scanning of all waterholes in forests of Chandrapur to check presence of similar traps at other places," Saxena said. He said that the forest department has already initiated scanning of all waterholes as such places are most vulnerable spots during summer. "We will ensure complete surveillance of waterholes during summer. Where there is lesser manpower, additional forest labourers will be deployed for protection to check such incidents," he said. He denied the possibility of initiating action against anybody for failure of protection in this case. At the poaching site, Gopal inspected the places and the waterhole where poachers had laid the trap. He also took stock of efforts being taken to track the poachers responsible for laying traps. NGO activist Bandu Dhotre gave demonstration of operation of jaw traps used for poaching to Rajesh Gopal. Gopal also visited proposed rehabilitation site for TATR's village Navegaon (Ramdegi) in Chimur tehsil on his way back to Nagpur. He, however, did not respond to phone calls made for his comment.

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