Save Tiger, Save Humanity: A Much Called For Rally in New Delhi
Alarmed with the almost daily reporting of rapidly declining tiger numbers and the inaction that follows, school children and several civil society groups in the Indian capital city of New Delhi are coming together to demand the basic right of the tiger–a Right to Survival. And in that, ensuring the survival of the entire human race. The Rally that follows a tiger consultation will also be a shift from all that has been done to all that needs to be done. As an organizer of the rally, comments like these are both inspiring and thought provoking.
Written by Govind Singh
Published on July 21st, 2009
Posted in About Animals, About Society, In Asia
Delhi Greens, Sanctuary Asia, Nehru Memorial Museum & Library, The Shri Ram School, The Climate Project-India, Nature First, Green India States Trust, Center for Social Markets, IYCN, Wildlife Conversation Trust, Bengal Tiger Campaign, National Tiger Conservation Authority and 350.org are all coming together for a Rally and a Tiger Consultation - of what is perhaps the LAST CALL FOR SAVING THE TIGER AND HUMANITY.
Being organised in the house-complex of India’s first Prime Minister: a stone’s throw from both the Parliament of India and the President of India’s House, the rally will demand action from the Government while also raise awareness among general public. While the civil society in urban India remains hyperactive in addressing urban environmental issues, the tiger almost never gets the attention it deserves.
It has now become clear that the almost four decade old Project Tiger has not been able to do much in stabilizing, let alone enhancing the tiger population in India. Its recent successor, the National Tiger Conservation Authority is said to be, for lack of better words, without teeth. And the tiger, perhaps unaware that so much is happening in its name is fast losing the battle to survive.
There are a total of 27 tiger reserves all over India that come under Project Tiger. But there is no reliable estimate of the total number of tigers that inhabit these. Media records and experts in the field have suggested that the government figures are inflated and misleading. And as if that was not all, tiger relocation from one reserve to another with none left is such that siblings are being made to interbreed in the wild.
WIth the tiger population threatened all across Asia, and the existence of a major underground market in China (and an almost porous border between the two countries in the form of Nepal and Tibet), tiger poaching and trade has always been a very lucrative business. Consequently, Save the Tiger campaigns have always been carried out by reputed NGOs in the country and eminent personalities have extended their support.
The tiger is still in trouble which is only an indicative that more needs to be done than has ever been done before, and differently. The Rally will be just this, a message to the government and to the people and also a call to grassroots organisation and initiatives (like the one carrying out poachers rehabilitation program) ensuring we save tigers in flesh and blood, not sell them as stuffed toys.
Image Courtesy Dr. Dharmendra Khandal of Tiger Watch