Rahul quotes Mahatma Gandhi to slam Centre, Maharashtra on tigress Avni’s killing

Pauline Gross
November 6, 2018

Congress President Rahul Gandhi on Monday joined the growing chorus of people who have protested the killing of man-eating tigress Avni. However, such incidents are not sufficient to classify a big cat as a killer, which can be established only after the aberrant animal's habit of deliberate stalking of human beings, while avoiding natural prey, is certain. This is something like the WCD Minister working for child traffickers. "Let her produce that court order", he added.

The tigress could have been saved, had the minister in charge of the Forest and Environment Department been a "little patient, sensitive and persistent", rued Ms Gandhi.

A tigress in India which is said to have killed 13 people has been shot dead after a major hunt, officials say.

The tigress was killed on Friday night after three months of searching in the forest area of Yavatmal district, about 678km east of Mumbai, the capital city of Maharashtra. In early September, the Office of the Chief Conservator of Forest issued an order to the Maharashtra Forest Department to tranquilise or kill the tigress.

In a series of tweets, Gandhi had stated, "It is nothing but a straight case of crime".

Maharashtra Forest Minister Sudhir Mungantiwar, who had objected to Gandhi's criticism of the state government over the killing, on Tuesday told CNN News18 that the Union minister should quit for failing to prevent malnourishment cases in the country.

"Avni was shot dead by sharp-shooter Asgar Ali, son of the famous sharp-shooter Nawab Shafat Ali, at compartment No. 149 of the Borati forest under the jurisdiction of the Ralegaon police station", a police official said.

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"If the Forest Department had taken adequate steps to capture the tigress when the initial human kills happened, the tigress could have been captured alive, and human lives would have also been saved".

Calling it a "ghastly murder", Gandhi added that the younger Ali Khan "was not authorized to kill". This is patently illegal. "I have to consider the women who have been killed by the tigress", Mungantiwar said. "Shafat Ali Khan has killed 3 tigers, at least 10 leopards, a few elephants and 300 wild boar in Chandrapur, Maharashtra".

Gandhi had called Shafat Ali Khan "a criminal known for supplying guns to anti-nationals and for a suspected case of murder".

He claimed that Maharashtra's tiger population had gone up by around 25 per cent in the last four years due to various initiatives of the state government since he took charge as the forest minister.

Ms Gandhi has also expressed concern over the well being of the two cubs left behind after the killing of their mother.

Meanwhile, Legit.ng had reported that a 96-year-old woman set a record by scoring 98 marks out of 100 in the literacy exam in southern Indian state of Kerala, officials said Thursday.

Other reports by GizPress

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