China cannot be held responsible for the poaching and poisoning of tigers in India, Minister of State for Environment and Forests Jairam Ramesh said here on Friday.

“It is true that there is demand from China for tiger and leopard parts, and it is true that that demand is being met from India, but we cannot hold China entirely responsible,” he told reporters on the sidelines of a meeting with Chinese Vice-Premier Hui Liangyu.

“The poaching happens in India, the poisoning happens in India…We have our own mafias who have their own interests in killing tigers,” said Mr. Ramesh. “We need to strengthen our monitoring, strengthen our borders.”

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