While I was watching Discovery yesterday, this series about the wild animals in India showcased how the authorites responsible for saving the Tiger ignored the requests of scientists and Wild Life conservative organisations. This led a massive increase in the cases of Poaching which resulted in a huge loss to the assests (Tiger) of the state.
Some astonishing facts that were revealed in the series which highlighted the need to use modern technology to identify and count the near extinct wild cats. There was a clash between the environmentalists and the government over the people chosen for The National Tiger Conservation Authority. The biggest inspiration for poaching continues to be the high price the Tiger skin can fetch in any market. Tiger’s bones are used for medicinal purposes.
Tibet also used to be the among the largest purchasers of Tiger Skin. It was a status symbol for people there. On an average, Tiger skin can earn the poacher an estimated INR 50,000, however, the amount at which it is sold elsewhere is at 5 to 10 times that price. But when H. H. Dalai Lama critisised people’s attitude, most (if not all) people threw the skins in fire and vowed not to use it again.
Good news coming in from Kaziranga National Park in Assam, that there is an increase in the number of tigers spotted. However, after having watched the series yesterday, I too cannot believe that this may be true. Tigers are a national asset and conservation of these endangered species has to be at utmost importance as is the financial crisis.
Indira Gandhi, when she was the prime minister of India was personally involved in the Project Tiger, which helped the cause. Today’s politicians just want to fight the opposition and are only interested in forming the Govt.
Its high time the citizens of this nation take an active step in saving these wild cats, who are a true national asset. If we do not step up today, our future will not even get a glimpse of a live Tiger!