After seeing 32,00+ fans on the facebook page called Save the Tiger
I wanted to see how many would turn up for the Tiger watch conservation event.
The answer was a BIG zero! (All those who came had heard about the event from individual emails. )
Admitted this was not covered in the news papers nor the tv channels like the great airtel adverts.
The Event saw the launch of Dhonk a private company started by divya whose husband Dr. Dharmendra Khandal is a Field Biologist with the NGO tiger watch in ranthambore. The company sell “local” products (local rajasthani products) like bags ,hankies etc. And a few articles made by the monghiya tribe (the bags and other local products outnumber the tribal products).
Documentary Curbing the Menace
The first movie was shot in 2002 (yes that is the latest ). About the poachers from the Moghiya tribe confessing to killing the tigers .The poachers (level 1 in the food chain) got 50,000 for female skin and 60,000 for male tiger skins .The middle men who stared at bigger village sold it to the traders in delhi who sold it to some guy in nepal or tibet.
They showed how the poachers family lived in a mud hut with no electricity, no water, no school,no hospitals. When the poacher was caught he was in a torn banyan. Now these guys have nothing to lose as they have nothing anyway.
My views after the movie and the interactive session
Moghiyas are extremely marginalized in the caste system, ranking down near the untouchables.And it looks like nothing has changed since 1949!
Sanwali wife of a former poacher from the Moghiya tribe says like the tiger they too have become the hunted.(Yes all the couch potatoes on facebook groups are shouting kill them! for killing the tiger)
Money talks. The middle man comes when the Moghiyas are going to buy cattle and offer them 60,000 rupees . what can a poor Moghiya guy with no education ,no electricity,no water,no health says when he has a kid to feed?
Brick bats for the NGOs! (It takes the failure of all sides to finish off the tiger forever)
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh visits Ranthambhore on Monday, says In the last 10 years, at least Rs 55 crore have been marked in the name of the tiger here.
NGOs have got at least Rs 5 crore over the last 10 years only from the govt.
Where did this money go?
It definitely did not reach the Moghiyas or they would have stopped poaching by now.
Gopal Mogya was Re-arrested after 17 years with tip from Tiger Watch sources by the Rajasthan’s Forest Department and Tiger Watch team.
Gopal was active in 1992 around Ranthambhore. He was arrested in 1992 by the Rajasthan Police with a tiger skin. Gopal was put on court trial for tiger skin possession, but soon was released on bail. During this time he declared himself dead.
Questions :- A guy vanishes for 17 years in the 21st century , a guy with no education ,no money. So how does a guy like this vanish? It would need a lot of help from a lot of people in high places to make someone vanish from the face of the earth for 17 years.
The skewed Census
There were an estimated 45,000 tigers living wild in India`s forests in the 1800′s. By the time hunting was banned in 1972, their numbers were down to 2,000.
In 1992 it was 1400
In 2004 it was 1400
In 2010 it was 1400 (yes all similar no)
With the pugmark method being erroneous .the camera trapping is done? by the WII (maybe once in two years – reports?)
After tiger watch made their report about the correct number of tigers in 2004 they were banned from the park till today 2010. (So how does the government/forest department expect to save the tigers by banning an ngo who was working towards saving the tiger?)
The 360 view of the main cause
The main cause is the Government. No electricity, no water,no schools,no employment initiatives, no health care (the only health care is by the Prakrit society who offer it only if they are approached by the tribal)
from this articles it looks like not much of the donation money reached the tribals
at the same time in this article the NGO and others are totally blaming the poachers
The only way forward
1) Central Govt leadership
2) State Govt leadership
3) Forest Department leadership
4) NGO leader ship
5) Get someone like lalith modi to make it run well!
June/July 2009The War on India’s Tigers
Mogiya poachers busted outside Ranthambore – Dharmendra Khandal
Tourism, tribals thrive except the tiger
The five-year race to save India`s vanishing tigers
Conservation: the New Killer
Tiger, on its last leg
Tiger Watch is a Non Governmental Organization (NGO) registered (Reg No.: F-19858 (Mumbai)) under the Bombay Public Trusts Act. This organization has, as its primary objective, the conservation and protection of wildlife, at Ranthambhore Tiger Reserve, Rajasthan. Mr. F. S. Rathore (Field Director, Ranthambhore National Park, Retd.) along with other prominent conservationist have launched this organization. www.tigerwatch.net
District Sawai Madhopur,
India 322 001
ref="http://www.tigerwatch.net/about_us.htm" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">http://www.tigerwatch.net/about_us.htm
VPO : SHERPUR KHILJIPUR
DIST : SAWAI MADHOPUR
PIN : 322 001
RAJASTHAN – INDIA
The second movie was
The Ridley’s Last Stand Directed by: Shekar Dattatri
This was about the 1000′s of turtles caught in the fishing nets and their dead bodies found all over the beaches of orrissa.
Here the poor local fishermen are in the same boat as the prosecuted monghiya tribe of rajasthan.
The poor uneducated fishermen are told to use the turtle excluder device or TED. And the navy patrol catches on of the boats and asks the fisherman
navy captain :- Have you seen the turtle excluder device or TED ?
fisherman :- the turtle? yes
Captain :- do you know anyone who uses the device
fisherman :- no
In 1996, the Indian government proposed legislature for the requirement of modified “indigenous” TEDs, which they called TSDs (Turtle Saving Devices) to be used by local fishermen. This was a response to the declining olive ridley population that were nesting in beaches such as in Orissa. The modified TSDs were similar to standard TEDs except for having fewer bars.
the problem is the stupid device which has not been improved since it was invented. How do you ask a group of fishermen to implement a device which has not taken their concerns and feedbacks are not taken to improve the fault device which allows their fish to escape. ?
The other main draw back is the orissa governments fault education of the fishermen. The lack of education makes it difficult for the fisherman to see the bigger picture when it comes to his livelihood.
The film maker lays down the solutions
1) Use TED (not going to happen as it is not efficient)
2) No lights close to the beach (are you kidding? with the speed of development in india you will see 5 star beach resorts on that beach very soon)
This problem is even more complicated that the tiger problem as it involved the turtles coming to a particular beach
The problem is that TEDs reduce the efficiency of the net system, resulting in a loss of some of the catch
An ode to the Olive Ridley
Turtle excluder device
Local Conservation of a Global Species
Saving India’s Sea Turtles
Shekar packs: Short films with punch
The Problem for Olive Ridely Turtles because of Fishing Trawlers
The Maharashtra Nature Park or the Mahim nature Park or the Maharashtra Nisarga Udyan is open from monday to saturday with a ticket for rs 5
For those who want to get there and do not have their own vehicle . Get down at bandra station. Cross to the east . take the over bridge till you reach kalanagar. take the bus number 180 from kala nagar which stops right outside the Maharashtra nature park . there are two stop you need to get down at that second stop.
Other Buses which reach the Maharashtra Nature Park
Bus no 11 – Navy nagar
Bus no 180 Ranilaxmibai Chowk
Bus no 255
Bus no 356
Bus no 355
Bus no 375
Bus no 448 Prateksha Nagar depot
Bus no 445
Bus no 348
Bus no 75
Bus no 76
Bus no 105
Bus no 166 antop hill
Bus no 180
Bus no 181
Bus no 371
Bus no 408 Mulund railway station
Bus no 473
Bus no 376 shivaji nagar
Ac buses which stop close by
AS 505 Belapur
There is a small hotel on the opposite side of the road called
Bhajrang kripa which serves puri bhaji,lassi,vada (it is a really small shop with two tiny benches).I could not see any other places to eat in vicinity. (Do not eat here if you are the types who eat at the Taj or other 5 star places.)
The park has a small man made lake which seems to be a really good place for bird watching early morning
Some conservation ideas
If you stand at the edge of the park where it overlooks the mithi river you can see a lot of mud being dumped on the other side of the river .The water of the river is toxic black.
If the government could clean up this water . it could help prevent all the water shortages in mumbai by part of this water to be used to water the plants or other uses (IF this toxic black water “can’ be cleaned )
This water can also be used as aqua culture
This would supply the city with good quality fish and prawns at low cost
This would also help in employing a lot of people
Both would help in motivating the government in keeping the river clean.
(I am adding this here after hearing all the stories of the stone walling of ideas in the bureaucracy)
update April 12th 2010
The Best Way to Save Tigers?