John Seidensticker, a senior curator and curator of mammals at the Smithsonian National Zoological Park once remarked: ‘There is something special about tigers that touches everyone. Tigers are the symbols of freedom and of nature untouched, but tigers can be lost in a heartbeat.’
Sounds quite alarming… but this is really the truth.

If you’re the sort who lets statistics impress, then let me tell you that at the beginning of the 20th century we had more than 100,000 tigers in the wild and the newest figure is less than 7,500.
Sounds quite alarming… but this is really the truth.

The media has been predicting for long that the way we are going, the tigers are soon going to be a man-made tragedy. Do we really want to be responsible for their extinction? Our population explosion and our greed to encroach upon land without thinking twice has led to a habitat loss for the tigers… as well as for a lot of other animals and birds in the wild. In addition to this, the number of prey animals going down, increase in poaching, and a lot of intrusive technologies are combining their disruptive strengths to ensure that the tigers struggle for existence.
Sounds quite alarming… but this is really the truth.

Yes, the tiger is indeed in the list of endangered species list… and the threat to their existence is very real. Saving this wonderful animal is possible only through a concerted effort by concerned people from the industry, the government, the NGOs, and the local individuals. And the role of ordinary mortals like you and me is equally vital because it is out voice that can travel the farthest. So this is one project that needs the combined effort of writers, artists, performers, and even bloggers.

In short, people are the key to saving wild tigers.

I shall be travelling with a few other journalists and bloggers to Dudhwa Wildlife Park and the agenda there will include morning and evening safaris. In addition to these, we will visit two conflict hot spots, a school (where awareness is created), meet the Primary Response team members and the Rapid Response Team members as well as forest officials. Yes, there will also be interactive sessions with WTI (Wildlife Trust of India) and Aircel representatives. Yes, Aircel has made efforts to create an impact in the field of environment (Save Our Tigers) and education. In partnership with various Non-Governmental Organizations, they have conceptualized, designed and begun capacity building and awareness campaigns on Saving Our Tigers in 2008.

There will be more on saving our tigers in posts that follow.


SaveOurTigers_twitter handle

For more information or to interact with ‘Save Our Tigers’, follow @SaveOurTigers on Twitter or log on to their Facebook page.
The Aircel involvement can be explored here: Save Our Tigers


Arvind Passey
04 February 2014