- India successfully brings home 8 cheetas under operation CHEETAH to Madhya Pradesh.
- The Cheetas will be released in a closed enclosure at the Kuno National Park by PM Modi.
- The re introduction of the big cats is being marked as an histotic incident in the history of Indian wildlife.
Madhya Pradesh: As 8 Cheetas were dropped at the Gwalior’s Maharajpura airbase, operated by the Indian Air Force (IAF), Madhya Pradesh CM Shivraj Singh Chauhan took to Twitter to expressing excitement on the homecoming of the feline.
“No greater gift for Madhya Pradesh than this on Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s birthday, Shivraj Singh Chouhan said calling the ‘historic’ ferrying of Cheetahs from Namibia to the Kuno National Park the biggest wildlife incident of the century.
The reintroduction of the big cats is being carriee out under the special program CHEETAH announced by the govt. PM Modi will release these special guests into an enclosure in the Kuno National Park, marking the return of the species which were called extinct 70 years ago.
Flagging the operation world’s first inter-continental large wild carnivore translocation project, the PMO in a media release said- Cheetahs will help in the restoration of open forest and grassland ecosystems in India. This will help conserve biodiversity and enhance the ecosystem services like water security, carbon sequestration and soil moisture conservation, benefiting the society at large.
As per information from an official from the Conservator of Forest Wildlife, the ‘African Cheetah Introduction Project in India’ was conceived in 2009 and a plan to introduce the big cat by November last year in KNP was delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Around 8 cheetas 3 males and 5 females have been transported from Cheetah Conservation Fund (CCF), an international not-for-profit organisation headquartered in Namibia on a special boeing cargo plane. The big cats are said to be put on mild sedatives and have covered a journey of 10 hours with Dr Laurie Marker, world’s leading expert on cheetahs on board.