Odisha: Sundari’s translocation to Kanha Tiger Reserve not anytime soon

Bhubaneswar: The fate of tigress Sundari appears to be hanging in balance as the process to send her back to Madhya Pradesh from Odisha has been put on hold for indefinite period.

Tigress Sundari at present will not be relocated to Kanha Tiger Reserve in Madhya Pradesh as the wildlife habitat has two more tigers, informed Hari Shankar Upadhyay, Chief Wildlife Warden (CWW).

The tigress will be shifted to Madhya Pradesh after relocation of two tigers to other wildlife sanctuary, he said.

Currently, tigress Sundari has been kept at an enclosure at Satkosia Tiger Reserve in Angul district. She was brought to Odisha from Bandhavgarh Tiger Reserve in 2018 under tiger translocation project approved by the National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA) for tiger augmentation and management at Satkosia.

However, the authorities were forced to keep the wild animal inside an enclosure following its repeated straying into human habitations at Satkosia. The tigress had allegedly mauled two persons at villages inside the reserve.

Also, ‘poaching’ of the first translocated tiger ‘Kanha’ from Madhya Pradesh had triggered a debate on translocation project.

In view of state government’s lack of initiatives for protecting two tigers translocated from Madhya Pradesh as part of tiger reintroduction programme at Satkosia Tiger Reserve, the NTCA decided to relocate Sundari from Satkosia to Kanha Tiger Reserve suspending the tiger translocation programme.

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