NEW DELHI:One mistake and it’s all over for this big cat at the National Zoological Park. BE2, aka Bittu, the four-year-old Royal Bengal Tiger, just tried to jump out of its enclosure a year ago. Since then, the wildcat has not been allowed in that enclosure for public view.
The authorities say that they are taking precautions of not letting out the tiger in the wake of the two-year-old incident in which a 20-year-old man was mauled to death by a six-foot-long white tiger named Vijay, after he fell into the enclosure. Caught in the wild in Bhopal, Bittu was transported to Delhi in 2012.
“Last year, it tried to leap out of the big enclosure. Since then, it is only allowed out when there is no public. As it is wild, we do not know how it will react on seeing public. It may even try to jump out again. We know that an animal needs exercise, so we release it in the bigger enclosure on Fridays, when the zoo is closed,” said zoo director Riyaz Khan.
Bittu is among the 13 Royal Bengal Tigers in the Delhi zoo. Though all other tigers are allowed out every day to roam and mate, the Bhopal tiger is fed in its cage.
An official said, “The enclosures that we have in the zoo are just psychological barriers created for animals. There is no guarantee that the wild animal, if put in the big enclosure, will not try to jump out again.”
“For now, we are planning to go with the same routine of Friday outings for Bittu. The routine is not affecting his health,” Khan said.