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MP had the highest number of tigers in India - at about 300 - according to the last estimation. The population has seen a sharp decline since then, with tigers being wiped out of Panna. M.P. nevertheless, has the potential to hold a significantly larger number. Towards this end, at the very least, the following steps are required to be taken within a period of three years:

  • Resettle villages from the core of Kanha and Satpura Tiger Reserves.
  • Halt the widening of the NH-7 and re-direct it from outside Pench.
  • Improve the forest cover along the Kanha-Pench corridor to enable easy movement of wildlife.
  • Accountability of officers, as in the Panna, Bandhavgarh (death of a tigress by vehicle) and Pench (burning of a tiger cub carcass) incidents.
  • A qualified resettlement officer should be appointed by the state government and dedicated to the task of voluntary shift of villages.
  • Tourism in tiger reserves should be handled by a dedicated ‘Tourism Officer’ and not by the forest department whose responsibility is protection.
  • Set up a special tiger protection force.