Vijay Pinjarkar & Mazhar Ali, TNN | Apr 29, 2012, 02.05AM IST
Doctors from the Government Veterinary College – NP Dakshinkar, Shirish Upadhye and Gautam Bhojane – are supervising the treatment. Medication has been started to ensure that gangrene doesn’t set in on the tiger’s injured left paw. “The further course will be decided after x-ray and operation if any will be done only on Monday,” said sources involved in the rescue.
Veterinary doctor PD Kadukar, who supervised the rescue and initial medication, claimed that the injury is serious. “There’s swelling on the paw and the tiger has difficulty in standing,” he said, adding that the tiger has been under tremendous strain for almost 18 hours while its leg was caught in jaw trap. “It could have struggled hard to release his paw, which only worsened its injury,” Kadukar added.
Earlier during the day, National Tiger Conservation Authority member-secretary Rajesh Gopal visited the spot. Terming the incident as unfortunate, he instructed forest officials to enhance surveillance and strengthen intelligence gathering to prevent such incidents. He held meetings with APCCF (wildlife) AK Saxena and TATR CCF Vinay Kumar Sinha in Chimur. “Gopal revealed some intelligence information he had regarding poaching and asked for enhancement of vigilance,” said Sinha.
Saxena said that Gopal had called for strengthening of surveillance in jungles, particularly at vulnerable spots. “He claimed similar poaching attempts were happening elsewhere in the country. He stressed on complete scanning of all waterholes in forests of Chandrapur to check presence of similar traps at other places,” said Saxena.
State PCCF (wildlife) SWH Naqvi commended the forest staff for the quick detection. “It was possible only because Phase IV of the census is on. It’s sad that one tiger is dead,” he said. “We will start group patrolling during the monsoon season.”
He said it’s too early to talk about the injured tiger’s release. “Should it be radio-collared and where should it be released will be decided in consultation with NTCA and other experts,” said Naqvi. “Moreover, we will have to see how quickly the tiger will recover from its trauma and injuries.”
Following the success of a tigress being released with a radio collar in November last year, the forest department may repeat the experiment with the current injured tiger. “Radio collaring is a possibility,” said Naqvi.
After the tiger was brought to the Forest Department’s premises in Seminary Hills from Chandrapur, it took nearly three hours and 20 people to lower the cage.
The forest officials didn’t seem ready with any plans. Only after the cage was lowered was a 500 sq ft area enclosure created with a white cloth. A cooler has been kept near the cage.
The tiger is readily lapping up a lot of water but was yet to touch the mutton pieces that it’s being fed when reports last came in.