Five lions not accounted for in Gir
Express news service
RAJKOT/JUNAGADH, APRIL 3, 2007
Even as the arrests made by the police in connection with the Gir
poaching cases turned out to be false alarms, there is a buzz in the
forest department about five other lions missing from the Babaria
Forest Range area where the two poaching incidents occurred last month.
The Babaria Range was home to 29 big cats. A census done at the range
in wake of killings put the number at 18. Now, the question on
everyone’s mind is if of the 29 lions, six have been killed and
carcasses have been found with bones and claws missing on March 3 and
30, and the census reveals only 18 lions in the area now, where are the
other five lions?
Forest department officials said it was possible that the lions might
have moved to another area. “Lions keep wandering. So it’s
difficult to say that some lions have gone missing. Till we come across
any evidence, it cannot be said that more lions have been
killed”, they said.
On Tuesday, police arrested one more person in connection with the two
poaching incidents that occurred in Babaria. Haji Abdul Rehman Makarani
(44) and Mohmed Makarani (41) were arrested from Babaria village in the
last 48 hours but were booked under provision of the Bombay Police Act
section 135 for being in possession of a sword and a big knife. A local
court in Una town released the duo on bail today.