- Villagers stay in buffer zone of protected tiger reserve
- They said the tigress killed their livestock
- This was the killing of a second tigress in less than a week
A tigress was beaten to death and run over in an Uttar Pradesh village on Sunday after it mauled a man, who died in hospital. This is the second incident days after a controversy over the killing of another tigress, known as Avni, which was believed to have killed 13 people in the last two years in a forest in Maharashtra.
After the tigress attacked a 50-year-old man near the Dudhwa tiger reserve around 210 km from Lucknow, angry villagers marched to the core area of the park, allegedly beat up forest guards, snatched a tractor and then ran over the 10-year-old tigress when they found her. They also hit the animal with heavy sticks.
"The 50-year-old man was mauled as he was going to his village, crisscrossing the jungle. Then some anti-social elements got together and beat the tigress to death. We have identified those responsible and we are going to file an FIR against them and get them arrested," said Mahavir Kojilangi, director, Dudhwa National Park.
The villagers stay deep within the buffer zone of the protected tiger reserve. Forest department officials say the tigress has never attacked people in the last 10 years.
Officials have told the police to take action against the villagers who killed the endangered animal.
The villagers say the animal had been attacking their livestock for two weeks and they were terrified. They said they had complained to forest officials about the tigress several times.
The killing of a second tigress in less than a week intensifies the debate over the effectiveness of conservation efforts in India.
Actor Randeep Hooda tweeted a photo of the tigress killed by the villagers.
Another #Tiger#NationalPride mercilessly killed by villagers with a tractor seized from @UpforestUp officials in #Chaltua#Mailani#KishanpurTigerSanctuary#UttarPradesh she injured a man when he ventured into the jungle. We need a special team for ever rising #ManAnimalConflictpic.twitter.com/FwN93fm2Ax- Randeep Hooda (@RandeepHooda) November 4, 2018
On Sunday, Union Minister Maneka Gandhi lashed out at the BJP-led Maharashtra government for ordering the "ghastly murder" of tigress Avni, and also said she would speak to Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis at the earliest.
Congress president Rahul Gandhi also tweeted a message on animal rights, spoken long ago by Mahatma Gandhi.
The greatness of a nation can be judged by the way its animals are treated.- Rahul Gandhi (@RahulGandhi) November 5, 2018
A report by the National Tiger Conservation Authority estimated the tiger population in India at 2,226 after a comprehensive nationwide count in 2014. The authority in collaboration with state forest departments, non-profit groups and the Wildlife Institute of India conducts a national assessment on tigers every four years.