The Tigress was linked to 13 deaths out of which 5 deaths were proven to have had her DNA present
Maharastra: Tigress Avni, officially known as T1, in Mahrastra's dense Yavatmal district forest was shot dead on Friday night, around 11 pm. The killing was carried out my controversial marksman, Shafath Ali Khan's son, Asgar Ali. The Tigress was survived by two cubs, who were often spotted together through camera traps.
Tigress Avni, who was blamed for 13 human killings, was proved to have her DNA present in 5 of those killings. After a continuous case of human-animal conflict situation, there was pressure from the unaware locals to kill the Tigress. However, the attempts to save Tigress Avni were reduced to bare minimum, which was proved through her sudden kill last night.
Sources told MyNation, "The position of the dart on the Tigress, proved that she was not being transquilised but killed. Even after several orders from the SC stating that attempts must be made to capture and relocate her, instead of directly killing her, it was not done. "
Another question left unanswered, is whether the Tigress died on the spot or died later due to stress. If she did die on the spot, it would be proven that there were zero efforts made to capture her, and the intention was only to kill, says a source who was part of the team behind capturing her.
In response, Meet Ashar, Lead Emergency Response Coordinator, PETA India, says: “Avni was killed illegally satisfying a hunter’s lust for blood, plain and simple, in possible contempt of court. She may not have died instantly but slowly, through pain and blood loss, and likely in front of her now orphaned and vulnerable cubs in apparent violation of the Wildlife Protection Act and the guidelines of National Tiger Conservation Authority. This matter must be investigated and treated as a wildlife crime. Whether sanctioned by the state or not, nobody can be above the law. This is a dark day for our nation and we must hang our heads in shame now, and again if this killing goes unpunished.”
Several conservationists and veterinarians have come forward crying foul in the killing of Avni. According to forest protocol, attempts to capture through darting is prohibited between sunset and sunrise, which highlights a clear illegal step taken by the forest officials.
"The forest officials initially tried to nab her alive. However, due to dense forest and darkness, they were unable to do so and finally a bullet was fired in which the tigress fell on the spot," a police official said.
"After she became motionless, forest officials went closer to her and later rushed her to a hospital in Nagpur, where she was declared dead," the official said.
Dr. H S Prayag, a wildlife veterinarian and forensic expert who had time and again presented new and tested methods to save Avni and the locals from being killed, had been neglected by the Maharastra forest officials. Prayag had brought to their notice that the use of Calvin Klein perfume would attract the tigress, through which they could capture and relocate her, but after several attempts personally and publicly, his ideas were misused.
"Urine of another tigress and American perfume was spread in some part of the compartment, following which Avni came by sniffing it," the official said.
Will Avni's cubs see a similar plight or will they be saved in time?
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Last Updated Nov 5, 2018, 8:06 PM IST