Tiger tourism resumes in reserves

Tiger tourism resumes in reserves

The Karnataka government on Tuesday allowed resumption of wildlife tourism in the State tiger reserves, after a gap of three months.

The Supreme Court had earlier this month lifted the ban on tiger tourism. Official sources in the Forest department said the tourism resumed on October 23 afternoon. “We received official confirmation to resume tourism. We conducted our first safari on Tuesday afternoon,” said a senior official.

Officials said there was a good response to safari at Bandipur and that visitors enjoyed good sighting of animals as waterholes were brimming due to good rains last week.

On whether there was a change in the tourism boundaries in the State reserves, the officials said the Supreme Court judgement had clearly stated that tourism should be limited to 20 per cent of the core area or whatever existed (in some reserves, it is less than 20 per cent).

“In some reserves in other parts of the country, tiger tourism is about 34 per cent. But in Karnataka, it is less than 20 per cent. This will be maintained,” said an official.
The apex court had on July 25 banned tiger tourism following a public interest litigation seeking eviction of illegal resorts in tiger reserves.