One of Avni's cubs captured

The female cub was caught on Saturday while an operation is still underway to secure the male cub. DH Photo

One of the cubs of tigress Avni has been caught, exactly 50 days after her mother was shot dead in Yavatmal district of Maharashtra. 

 
The female cub was caught on Saturday while an operation is still underway to secure the male cub. The cubs are around one year old.
 
Securing the two cubs was a major challenge for Maharashtra Forest Department (MFD) after Avni (responsible for 13 human deaths in the Pandharkawada forest range) was shot dead on November 2.
 
"Yes, the female sub-adult cub has been secured," Additional Principal Chief Conservator for Forest (Wildlife) Sunil Limaye told DH over phone from Yavatmal. According to him, the operation was still underway to secure the male cub. "We are sure, the male cub too would be secured in one to two days," Limaye said.
 
An expert team from Madhya Pradesh shot a dart from a Gypsy and got her. The cub has been sent to Pench Tiger Reserve,  MFD sources said. 
 
Principal Chief Conservator of Forest (Wildlife) A K Mishra oversaw the operation. Maharashtra's Finance,  Planning and Forest Minister Sudhir Mungantiwar has been briefed about the development. 
 
The National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA) will oversee the rehabilitation plan of the two cubs. The female cub weighs around 80 kgs - and both cubs were at a distance when the darting took place. All possible means like open Gypsy and four elephants were being used in the tracking the operation.
 
The killing of Avni, who was described as a "man-eater", has snowballed into a controversy and political issue with war-of-words between Mungantiwar and Union Woman & Child Development Minister Maneka Gandhi.
 
A report of the Minstry of Environment, Forest & Climate Change has blamed the MFD for flouting standard operating procedures. It has also raised doubts on the competence of Asghar Ali Khan, the son of Nawab Shafath Ali Khan, who shot the tigress. The post-mortem report also questioned the darting of Avni.
 
 
 
 

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One of Avni's cubs captured

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