State to install cameras for tigers counting

Bhubaneswar: In view of the recent controversy over the figure of NTCA and State forest department, the Odisha government has decided to install cameras in tiger dominated forests to ensure smooth conduct of head counting.

As the NTCA had not given the final report on the tigers by March 31, the government will approach
the NTCA and wild life institute to use more cameras during head count of the big cats. Row over counting intensified after State principal chief conservator of forests (Wildlife) S.S. Srivastava claimed that there are around 60 big cats roaming in the forests of Odisha, thereby negating the report of National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA).

The All India Tiger Estimation Report-2014, released in January this year, had reported a fall in Odisha’s big cat population to 28 from 32 in 2010 and 45 in 2006. The census was conducted by NTCA.

The dismal figure has pitted the State government against the Centre as the former did not accept it. Srivastava had then shot off a letter to the national body countering its claim and demanded a re-examination of the counting process.