Caught in the confusion whether to kill the 'man-eating' tiger spotted near Khanapur in Belagavi or capture it, the state forest department has finally given the order to kill the tiger! A day after a tiger killed a 23-year-old pregnant woman at Jamboti village near Khanapura taluk of Belagavi district, the forest department bowing to pressure of political leaders and locals has given the order to kill the tiger, invoking a special law under the Indian Wildlife Act.
The decision to kill the tiger is seen as the first of its kind in the history of the department in Karnataka. Though the department contemplated killing the 'man-eater' at Chikkaburgi near Mysuru, it decided to capture and relocate the big cat.
Confirming the move, principal chief conservator of forests (wildlife) Vinay Luthra said, "We have ordered the tiger killed as a last resort. We will try our best to capture the tiger. If that does not happen, we will kill it."
The department has also come under intense criticism from the local MLA, MP and others. Prakash B Hukkeri, Belagavi MP, ordered local forest officials to kill the tiger at the earliest.
Accordingly, the forest department has formed 10 teams to take part in a search operation. The teams include both forest and police personnel.
"The teams have three DCFrank officials, 2 SP-rank officers, five ACFand RFO-rank officials and KSRP constables, forest watchers, and guards. Two expert veterinarians, Dr Sanath and Dr Prayag, are equipped with tranquiliser guns to shoot the tiger. A mobile squad of forest department officials has also been put on high alert.