3 June 2013 Dehradun: The Jim Corbett Tiger Reserve in Uttarakhand is facing a crisis with three tiger deaths reported in past six days and nine tiger deaths this year. In the latest incident, the body of a two-and-half-year-old male tiger was found in a decomposed state in the western part of the reserve, close to a water body, on Saturday.
The forest officials are on tenterhooks. Corbett Field Director Samir Sinha said that poaching cannot be ruled out.
The forest department has taken four Gujjars into custody for further interrogation.
The bodies of the big cats in all the three instances suggest they died days before being found, raising doubts over the way patrolling is being carried out in the tiger landscape of Kumaon's tarai region, experts said.
The tiger population in India is estimated to be 1,706 with close to 200 big cats in the Corbett Tiger Reserve.