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State gets one more Project Tiger

TIGER TRAIL: Conservation of tigers will get a boost with the sanctioning of the fourth Project Tiger in the State.

TIGER TRAIL: Conservation of tigers will get a boost with the sanctioning of the fourth Project Tiger in the State.  


Karnataka, Centre to implement project jointly; it will be launched in a month

Allocation may go up from Rs. 30 lakh to Rs. 15 crore State's efforts at protecting wildlife rewarded : CM

BANGALORE: Dandeli Wildlife Sanctuary and the adjoining Anshi National Park have been granted the special status of Project Tiger.

With this, Karnataka, which boasts of three Project Tiger sanctuaries, has now got a fourth.

The Centre and the State governments will implement this jointly.

The Dandeli sanctuary and the Anshi National Park together have around 40 tigers.

Madhya Pradesh is the only other State which has five Project Tiger areas including one which has the famed white tigers.

State's distinction

Among the southern States, Tamil Nadu and Kerala have one Project Tiger each.

Kerala has also sought project Tiger status for Parambikulam, which is pending approval.

Long-drawn demand

It has been a long-drawn demand of the State Forest Department and the wildlife conservationists here to safeguard the tiger habitat in the Dandeli region.

The Centre gave the "in-principle clearance" for the fourth Project Tiger in the State in 2006. The Dandeli Project Tiger (inclusive of Anshi) spreads over 825, and along with the Mahaveer Wildlife Sanctuary of Goa covers an area of over 2,000

Chief Minister H.D.Kumaraswamy told The Hindu that he was delighted that the State's effort at protecting the forest wealth and wildlife habitat had been rewarded with another Project Tiger area .

Official sources said the final notification was issued a few days ago.

New sanctuary

The new wildlife sanctuary, which has a large area and home to a variety of flora and fauna, is expected to be inaugurated in about a month.

Bandipur, which adjoins the Wyanad forests of Kerala and the Mudumalai sanctuary of Tamil Nadu; Rajiv Gandhi National Park at Nagarhole; and Bhadra Wildlife Sanctuary are the three existing Project Tiger parks in the State, which together have 400 tigers.

Enhanced funding

According to Principal Chief Conservator of Forests (Wildlife), A.K.Varma the status of Project Tiger will mean enhanced funding for infrastructure, improvements to the habitat and adequate availability of water within the core areas.

As of now, the allocation for the Dandeli and the Anshi sanctuaries was around Rs. 30 lakh per year, and it would now be raised to around Rs. 15 crore.

Mr. Varma said that a fresh survey of the tiger population along with that of deer and bison would be conducted.

Officials here feel that with the Project Tiger programme coming under review by the Prime Minister himself, a lot more can be done to save the "big cats" and retain India's status as one of the major sanctuaries of the tiger.

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