The Western Ghats is one of the best kept conservation areas of India. Indeed in the past you regularly heard tigers growling. In this remote northern corner of Goa tigers are a well-known and popular member of the local fauna. Being an animal that many people would like to see in the wild having tigers is also withdraw to your corner of the world.
So, why is it that the Goa our authorities are denying that any wild tigers live in their corner of the world? So when recently a mother tiger and her 3 cubs were found dead killed by Poachers in the Mhadei Wildlife Sanctuary, the government had some questions to answer.
This is particularly because the government has regularly stated that if any tigers were there, they were merely moving through the area. However breeding is not only a sign of of a permanent population but of one that is comfortable and is doing well.
It would seem that the Goa authorities believe that there is more money to be made in cutting down the forest for local Farmers and businesses, and peculiarly for tourists. I can just about understand the first to although although usually deforested land is not good land for growing crops on. However, deforesting for tourists seems a bit bizarre. Generally one of the things that tourists go to India the most for is to see the incredible diversity of wildlife that exist there, with the highlights of any trip being the sighting of a tiger.
The statement was released: “If you are using wildlife to block the economy, you create enemies of wildlife,” said Goa’s chief minister, Manohar Parrikar, in 2013.
While true in theory his suggestion is that therefore you should protect no wildlife and that is absurd as many of the people who come to India come to see the wildlife. Generally people living in the vicinity of well-run parks can have a higher standard of living than those living elsewhere.
It would seem one of the reasons for the poor behaviour by the Goa administration, is not the creation of a tiger reserve. A tiger reserve itself is not necessarily a problem, but the buffer zone that surrounds it. The buffer zone is generally an area. Where people are excluded and where deforestation cannot occur.
However, the local government is supported by wealthy landowners in the area, who do not want their business to be Interrupted by the protection of tigers and other wildlife.
This appears to simply be another reason why local government should never be allowed to be involved in the publication of environmental analysis. It is almost impossible for the entire government to have no ulterior motive. This ulterior motive will be off and be given a boost by the editing that they then do. We have seen similar behaviour around the world, from countries such as America and Britain two places in Africa and elsewhere.
Thankfully in the West, often there is someone who stands up and makes it clear how badly the behaviour has been. While this doesn’t always stop the bad decisions it does means that the politicians are usually eventually held to account.