Tamil Nadu’s Masanagudi outstretched with a killer tiger on the prowl
Chennai: The Masanagudi region in Tamil Nadu is tense with villagers not coming out of their homes after a killer tiger who villagers say killed four people and 12 cattle, is still on the prowl.
Tamil Nadu’s Chief Wildlife Custodian Shekar Kumar Neeraj has already ordered the tiger to be shot and five teams have been deployed to the area, but the tiger is elusive.
Sankara Subramanian, a local businessman in Gudalur who runs a foster family, said: “The tiger is always on the prowl and from Theppakadu checkpoint, rangers and police have restricted it. entry and it affects business. We call on the forestry department to kill the tiger immediately.
The tiger with the code name MTR 23 was spotted on Saturday noon by one of the five teams but could not be targeted. Forestry officials, however, are convinced that the tiger would soon be captured or killed.
A senior officer from the Madumalai Tiger Reserve told IANS: “Drones are in a hurry in search operations, but fog and heavy rains are a problem. We started the search in the morning because after sunset, no operations are possible according to the guidelines of the National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA).
The forestry department has also placed live bait in areas where the tiger moves and hopes to spot it immediately. An elite team of ten members from Megamalai and Coimbatore has already joined the operation from Sunday morning.
Residents of Masanagudi have called for urgent action to kill the tiger. Umesh Chandran, a local farmer and trader from Kerala who is staying in the area for commercial purposes said: “The villagers fear for their lives and they want the animal to be slaughtered immediately. They are even ready to hire snipers who have already approached the forestry department, things will escalate if the department does not find a solution quickly.
Meanwhile, the last rites of Basavana 82, who was killed by the tiger, took place on Saturday and people protested at the burial site as well.
The tourist circuit of Gudalur and surrounding areas has also been affected by the presence of the tiger and the movement of forces, but with the tiger still remaining elusive, the locals are disappointed.
Activists, meanwhile, have moved the Madras High Court against the forestry department which is trying to track down the tiger. Sangeeta Arora, an animal activist based at UP and People for Cattle in India (PFCI), based in Chennai, asked the court on Saturday not to kill the tiger with the code name MT23.