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Friday, July 13, 2012

Ten tigers have died in six months, admits forest minister

Sandeep Ashar, TNN | Jul 13, 2012, 10.21AM IST MUMBAI: In a grim statistic, the state forest department on Thursday admitted that ten tigers have died in the past six months. Another tiger was reported to have suffered a serious injury. In a written reply to a query included in the starred questions list in the legislative council, forest minister Patangrao Kadam also admitted that deaths in at least "four" cases was due to poaching. The minister had submitted the reply in response to a query by NCP's Vijaysinh Mohite Patil on measures adopted for the safety of the big cats. Of the ten big cats, two were tiger cubs, the minister has informed. The state government, which has acknowledged the concern over the trend, has said that various steps including setting up of patrolling squads, reducing and regulating man-animal conflicts across tiger corridors, setting up chowkies at fixed distances and effective use of wireless sets for better communication in such areas have been taken up to reverse the trend. In response to a related question, Kadam also expressed concern over a rise in leopard deaths reported from the Sanjay Gandhi National Park. In the past 30 months, fourteen leopards are believed to have died in the region. Kadam claimed the patrolling had been beefed up in the region.

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