Mystery shrouds death of tiger Mahavir

Bhubaneswar: Days after the death of tiger Mahavir in the core area of the Satkosia Tiger Reserve, questions are now being raised on the post-mortem report which ascertains that the big cat had died of multiple organ failure due to septicaemia following a wound on his neck.

Mahavir was found dead in the core area of the Reserve on November 14.

While some experts have alleged loopholes in the post mortem report, speculations continue to build up whether the exact cause behind the death of the tiger would come to fore or it would remain a mystery.

Wildlife expert, Lala Ashwini Kumar Singh, said “Veterinarians have not mentioned about external injury which they might have skipped. I think it is a case of poaching. But without looking at that angle, the forest department is more worried about relocation project. I am really frustrated at this development.”

“The incised wound on the neck region of the big cat most probably could have been caused by an external sharp object like wire or nail but we will have to investigate into that,” Dr Susen Kumar Panda, Head of Department of Veterinary Pathology (OUAT) said.

On the other hand, Satkosia Field Director Sudarsan Panda has already given a clean chit to the local villagers without launching a probe into the matter.

However, the National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA) guidelines suggests that such an incident should be followed by a probe over poaching which is entirely missing in Mahavir’s death case.

“The tiger had definitely fallen into a trap but sadly the forest department has not accepted it. So without that, a case of poaching can’t be registered,” NTCA representative Dr Biswajit Mohanty said.

Mahavir, also known as MB2, was a three-year-old Royal Bengal Tiger and part of the first inter-state tiger relocation project in the country.