The ‘high-profile’ tiger hunt came to an end following its shootout in Yavatmal District in Maharashtra on Friday. The killing of Avni, an alleged man-eating tigress, has sparked off controversy and exchange of words with Union Minister for Women and Child Development Maneka Gandhi terming it as a ‘ghastly murder’.
Maneka tweeted “I am deeply saddened by the way the tigress Avni has been murdered by a professional anti-national killer at the behest of the minister in Yavatmal, Maharashtra”. She also stated the killing as ‘a straight case of crime’.
The Minister for Environment and Forests Sudhir Mungantiwar pointed out that the tigress had killed 13 people in the past two years. The Supreme Court had even issued a hunting order for Avni in September.
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According to Times Now, “the Supreme Court refused to overturn the shoot-at-sight order issued against the big cat” by AK. Misra, the Principal Chief Conservator Forests (PCCF).
In the past couple of months, over a hundred people including armed officials and professional trackers had been trying to catch Avni. As per the Supreme Court’s ruling, the tigress was to be tranquillized and trapped, but she was shot after she attacked the team who found her.
In a press statement, Maneka said: “the ghastly murder has put two cubs at the edge of a sad death and this is the third such instance where a tigress was killed on the directions on the Environment and Forests Minister”. She added that the tigress was a mother. “We cannot allow this kind of insensitive and merciless attitude towards animals”.