The tiger estimation report 2010 by the ministry of forest and environment released recently cites an increase in tiger population by 200 + tigers. This report was released by MOEF in Bhopal recently and attended by top bureaucrats and who is who in nature conservation. It was heartening see there a lady ( Belinda Wright) who has sacrificed her whole life in favor of the endangered species and perhaps some who could speak.
What is evident that under Hon Minister Jairam there has been new initiative taken. There is very little doubt that he is a friend of nature as whole in the country. The minister exhibits energetic and palpable commitment to nature conservation and environment protection in India. But is he is as enamored by the economic, political and democratic urgency as anybody? Time will tell.
The report albeit does not create any euphoria in our minds ..it should not. The ground situation remains the same perhaps worsened by impetus on rabid economic growth. The animal remains endangered, still and ironically the leopard is in the worst case scenario as tiger already is. Let us give credit if the numbers have really increased in spite of the fact that there is still no credibility in the process - camera trap or whatever. But experienced field biologists should always be relied upon.
If the numbers have really increased and auger further increase than it is a heartening news. What it implies is that we have learned to govern ourselves and our Nation better. The debacle at Sariska and Panna have created doubt in our governance itself. If right in the control of highly paid and privileged administrative system a population of tiger can be wiped out..and fact to be discovered much later in a farcical manner...it is nothing but humoring ourselves in front of the whole World..what more.
For a laymen who does not understand political maneuvering, administrative lethargy, corruption and inability, it is difficult to understand the plight of the tiger and hence the whole environment. In my years of wandering in the wild I have yet to see the top brass actively engaged in the field, though there are few exceptions. But few exceptions do not make a tiger.