RAIPUR: A trained dog squad from Madhya Pradesh’s Kanha tiger reserve was roped-in to assist in a probe into the poaching (killing) of sambar deer in Chhattisgarh but in the process sniffed out an apparent failure of authorities in safeguarding tigers and other wildlife in the Bhoramdev wild life sanctuary at Kawardha district, the home district of chief minister Raman Singh. As the sniffer dog got engaged to track down the culprit involved in the hunting of deer inside the jungle, the trained canine led the handler team to couple of dwellings where nails of tiger, bear, bones of pangolin and other wild life animals were found. “While inquiring into the death of a bison in the sanctuary, we apprehended those who were accused of killing sambar deer. We sought assistance of dog squad from Kanha tiger reserve and incidentally traced the nails of tiger and bear. Six accused have been taken into custody. Further investigation is on”, said Prabhat Mishra, Kabeerdham district forest officer. Couple of months ago the State Wildlife Board chaired by the state CM took a decision to convert the Bhoramdev sanctuary into the fourth tiger reserve of Chhattisgarh and had sent the proposal for approval to National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA). The decision was also taken to increase the sanctuary area from 350 sq km to 624 sq km. However the sniffer dog exposed the level of preparedness of the state forest department on the advisories and recommendations of the NTCA following the recovery of nails and other remains of wild animals. In April this year, Chhattisgarh high court categorically asserting on one of the petitions on Bhoramdev sanctuary, stated that there should be requisite deployment of beat guards and other officers and staff to monitor the movement of tigers in that sanctuary. “Once the area is identified and notified as wild life sanctuary or the tiger reserve identified all requisite steps should be taken to effectuate the object sought to be achieved through those notification”, observed the double bench headed by the Chief Justice T B Radhakrishnan. “It’s irony that the sniffer dog highlighted the negligent approach and poor preparedness of the forest officials for Bhoramdev sanctuary when the decision was taken to create a new tiger reserve”, said wildlife enthusiast Nitin Singhvi, who had then filed a petition in the high court. Citing the wild animal anti-poaching database of Chhattisgarh, Singhvi revealed that 16 cases were registered in the state on recovery of tiger skin and 44 other lodged over the seizing of leopard’s skin and teeth between 2006-2017. "These many deaths of tigers then go unaccounted", he asserted. The principal chief conservator of forest (wild life) R K Singh didn’t respond to the calls and the message texted to him for his comments.
Express News Service