Prime Minster Narendra Modi on Monday released the data of fourth tiger census which revealed a growth of 33 percent in the Tiger population over the last four years. Modi said we have achieved the target of doubling tiger population 4 years ahead of the schedule.

Releasing the All India Tiger Estimation Report 2018, Modi said “nine years ago at St. Petersburg  it was decided that the Tiger population will be doubled by 2022 and we have achieved the target 4 years ahead. On this occasion we reaffirm our commitment towards protecting tigers. The data of tiger census just makes every Indian happy.”

In India tiger census is carried out every four years. Three cycles of estimation of tiger population have been completed beginning from 2006, 2010 and 2014.

The tiger census conducted in India is believed to be the world’s largest wildlife survey in terms of its coverage, intensity, sampling given the quantum of camera trappings. They are estimated taking cues from the pugmarks and stripes on the wild cats.

According to the fourth cycle of tiger census of the total 2,967 tigers that India has, the highest number of tigers were recorded in Madhya Pradesh (526) followed by Karnataka (524) with Uttarakhand  (442) in the third place.

While most of the states showed a positive trend, Mizoram and Chhattisgarh showed a decline in the number of tigers. Reasons for the decline are yet to be ascertained.

Launching India’s progress report, Prime Minister Narendra Modi lauded that India is the safest habitat for tigers in the world.

However there are some concerns that need to be addressed. Encroachment in the protected areas is increasing which poses a threat to the wildlife, including Tigers. When the protected areas are disturbed the wild animals venture into human habitats in search of food and water.

Recently, an adult tigress was beaten to death on Thursday by a group of people in Mataina village in Uttar Pradesh’s Pilibhit district for attacking the villagers.

In Telangana’s Amrabad Tiger Reserve, the Department of Atomic Energy identified huge reserves of Uranium and is seeking to explore the radioactive material in the area.

If undertaken the project will displace hundreds of wild animals threatening their habitat and increasing man-animal conflict apart from polluting the region. 

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