`Man eater` tigress Avni killed in Maharashtra

Governance       ‘Trigger-happy’ hunter’s son kills tigress Avni but no one’s saying how he got there
       
       	        Sanya Dhingra         3 November 2018

Tigress Avni, believed to have been responsible for the deaths of 13 people in Maharashtra in the past two years, was shot dead in Yavatmal district of Maharashtra on Friday night as part of an operation, police said Saturday. Her fate eventually landed at the doorstep of the Supreme Court, which said the tigress may be killed only if all efforts to tranquilise her fail.

The state forest department had hired an expert hunter and sharpshooter, and mounted an extensive operation involving almost 200 personnel, trap cameras, drones, a pack of trained sniffer dogs and a hang-glider to trace her, broadcaster NDTV reported. "However, due to dense forest and darkness, they were unable to do so and finally a bullet was sacked in which the tigress fell on the spot", the official said.

T1 is said to have been shot dead by Ashgar Ali Khan, son of India's most famous hunter Nawab Shafath Ali Khan, who was meant to be leading the hunt but was not present Friday night.

A team of private hunters, horses and elephants were also sent inside the Pandharkawda forest to shoot the animal on sight.

Gandhi tweeted, "I am deeply saddened by the way tigress Avni has been brutally murdered in Yavatmal, Maharashtra".




Banait t, the wildlife activist quarrelled that instead of killing her, the Forest Department should capture her alive, as per the Supreme Court orders on September 11. He also hit back at NGOs criticizing Avni's killing and said forest teams could not have let humans die to save an animal. There is no update on her cubs.

A tigress in India which is said to have killed 13 people has been shot dead after a major hunt, officials say. The choice of the shooter and the circumstances of Avni's death have faced criticism from animal rights activists. The staff started alerting the passersby about the presence of the tiger. As an act of self defence, Mr Asghar fired from a distance of about 8-10 m.

The cologne, tested with success on jaguars at the Bronx Zoo, got spritzed in areas of the western state of Maharashtra where the killer tigress was suspected of hiding. There were reports that the state government made a decision to terminate his services after the intervention of Union minister Maneka Gandhi.

The plea also sought revocation of the appointment of Hyderabad-based sharpshooter Shafaqaut Ali Khan for the job, contending that he lacked the experience of tranquillising wild animals. Taking to Twitter, Gandhi said that the killing of Avni had left her saddened and she planned to strongly take up the matter with the state's chief minister, Devendra Fadnavis.

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