On Friday, Forest Minister Vishwajit Rane said that there was no proposal before the state government to declare a tiger reserve in Goa. Based on information from forest officials, he said that the tiger, which had been spotted, was not “a resident of Goa’s forests.”
“The sightings, which have been reported, are of a tiger that comes to Goa’s forest from the neighbouring state of Karnataka, through a corridor and goes back. The tiger is in transit, it is not a resident of Goa’s forest,” the Minister said. “Declaring any area as a tiger reserve is not advisable in such circumstances. There is no use declaring the area as a tiger reserve.”
Rane also clarified that there was no link between the tiger census, conducted by the Central Government, and the demand to declare a tiger reserve in Goa.
Residents of Sattari had recently objected to the tiger census being carried out by the forest officials.
Environmentalists have been demanding that the government declare the entire area around the Mhadei wildlife sanctuary, located in the north east of the state, as a tiger reserve.
Rane added that he would be with the people as far as the tiger reserve issue was concerned. “As there is no resident tiger in Goa’s forest, there is no question of declaring a tiger reserve in the state,” he said.