Court directive to M.P. Govt. on protecting tigers

BHOPAL, SEPT. 2. The Madhya Pradesh High Court has directed the competent authority of the State Government to take ``appropriate'' steps while disposing of a writ petition on continuous poaching of tigers and deterioration of the overall situation in the Bandhavgarh National Park.

The petitioner, Mr. Rajesh Kumar Dwivedi, who filed the public interest litigation (PIL) in the Court in this regard is an environmentalist and has worked as a forest guide in the park area.

While seeking a detailed probe, the petitioner said the number of tigers and other wild animals is much less than the numbers being projected by the State authorities.

The petition further said that the Government had failed in its responsibility to protect and manage the park and tiger reserve due to the negligence and corrupt practices of the authorities.

The forest which could be found a few years ago inside the national park has now started disappearing, he has alleged while pointing out that the number of tigers is also decreasing.

Through the petition, it was pointed out that the park authorities were not paying attention to complaints lodged at about poaching of tigers and other wild animals or illegal felling of trees inside the protected Area.

It was alleged that funds allocated to the park were being ``misappropriated'' and the park facilities were being misused by the State authorities.

Addressing a press conference here on Saturday, Mr. Dwivedi said ever since he raised the issue at the highest State level, he was being victimised by the park authorities.

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