[dropcap]O[/dropcap]n Sunday, a tigress was crushed to death with a tractor in the Dudhwa Tiger Reserve, hours after the animal mauled a 50-year-old man in Uttar Pradesh’s Pilibhit district, according to officials.
This comes just two days after hunters shot dead a ‘man-eating’ six-year-old tigress Avni in Maharashtra’s Pandharkawda forest. Animal rights activists in their protest against the recent killings of tigers, say that humans are trespassing into their habitat, leading to increasing cases of conflict.
Mahavir Kaujlagi, deputy director of the Dudhwa Tiger Reserve, told Hindustan Times that the villagers killed the tigress in a retaliatory attack. “While we were busy in rushing the injured man to hospital, the villagers surrounded the big cat and crushed it to death under a tractor,” he said. Fifty-year-old Devanand, who the villagers said was attacked by the tigress, succumbed to his injuries later.
Field director of the tiger reserve, Ramesh Kumar Pandey said, “An FIR will be lodged under the Wildlife Protection Act and appropriate action will be taken. The killing of a tiger inside the protected area is a serious offence.” He added that the incident took place in the core area of the reserve.
As per Kaujlagi, the corpse of the tigress has been recovered and autopsy will be carried out under the NTCA (National Tiger Conservation Authority) guidelines on Monday.
Tiger being India’s national animal is categorised as a ‘Schedule One’ species of endangered animals under the Wildlife Protection Act.
“As tigers continue to lose their habitat and prey species, they are increasingly coming into conflict with humans as they attack domestic animals – and sometimes people. In retaliation, tigers are often killed by angry villagers,” according to WWF.