Read this news about Bandhavgarh in The Asian Age -
Firing near tiger reserve raises fresh doubts
A firing incident near the entrance of the Bandhavgarh Tiger Reserve on Wednesday has once more brought this protected area under sharp focus. This tiger reserve in eastern Madhya Pradesh came under the scanner after a tigress was hit by a rashly driven vehicle and killed inside the core area on May 19.
When contacted, state additional chief wildlife warden T.R. Sharma verified the firing incident but refused to add anything further saying the matter is under investigation. Regarding the estimated tiger population in Madhya Pradesh, he said that according to the 2006 Wildlife Institute of India, there are about 300 tigers (236-300-364) across nine landscapes, which also include the protected areas. The latest WII figures are awaited, he said.
On being approached to comprehensively share views on steps needed to ensure long-term survival of tigers, forest and wildlife experts here expressed concern and pointed out that the tiger habitat is shrinking and declining at a rapid pace and it is time for introspection to review the outcome of what has been done in the last two or three decades for protection of tigers and go for a correction course before it is too late.
Additional principal chief conservator of forests R.N. Saxena told this correspondent that we lack a policy of comprehensive landscape management. The Satpura landscape in the North and South of the Narmada river — starting from Anuppur district in eastern Madhya Pradesh and stretching across Dindori, Mandla, Balaghat, Hoshangabad, parts of Narsinghpur, and Sehore — has three magnificent tiger reserves. They are Kanha, Pench and the Satpura National Park.
Mr Saxena said that the Satpura landscape is witnessing all kinds of fragmentation and this is having an adverse impact on the tiger territory. In fact, he said, growing population and developmental activities are having an adverse impact on the forests of central India. As an analyser of the State of Forest Report regularly brought out by the Forest Survey of India, he has found that every passing report is a reminder that our forest resources are going down on each and every count whether we talk of growing stock, density, site quality, distribution of age, current annual increment, mean annual increment, status of regeneration and susceptibility to biotic pressure. The situation gets compounded by population which is exploding at an exponential rate. At the time of Independence, our per capita forest cover was .60 hectare per person whereas now it has gone down to .06 per person.
Mr Saxena said that there are 8,000 forest beats in Madhya Pradesh and 20 per cent of these are positive for occurrence of tigers. For protection of tigers, he was emphatic in pointing out that the entry and exit in national parks and sanctuaries should be regulated and the movement inside the protected areas should be minimised because it is difficult to differentiate between a genuine resident and a criminal inside a protected area.
He also said that tourism has to be restricted on the basis of the carrying capacity of PAs because these are meant for wildlife protection and tourism is incidental. Tourism cannot be the prime reason for management of protected areas, he said.
Link - http://www.asianage.com/india/firing...esh-doubts-167