Navagaon-Nagzhira will be developed as a tourist attraction Center ; Forest Minister Sudhir Munagantiwar expressed confidence

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Mohammad Suleman Baig : Based on research, tourism, conservation, and in-bridging, the Forest Department has taken initiatives, and as part of that, the relocation of tigers to the Navagaon-Nagzhira Wildlife Sanctuary has been carried out today. The forest area here is suitable for the natural habitat. Forest Minister Sudhir Munagantiwar expressed confidence that the relocation of tigers will transform Navagaon-Nagzhira Wildlife Sanctuary into an attraction center for wildlife enthusiasts, researchers, and tourists. The Navagaon-Nagzhira Tiger Project is an excellent location for natural habitat, and the offspring of the relocated tigers will contribute to the impressive growth of the tiger population in the future, as mentioned by him.

Today, in the presence of Forest Minister Sudhir Munagantiwar, the tigers brought from Bramhapuri region were released into the Navagaon-Nagzhira Tiger Project. After the program, they addressed the gathered journalists in a press conference. Key attendees included Sunil Mendhe, Ashok Nete, MLA Vijay Rahangdale, Manohar Chandrikapure, Chief Conservator of Forests (Wildlife) Mahip Gupta, Regional Chief Conservator of Forests Rangnath Naikade, Chief Conservator of Forests and Project Director Dr.Jitendra Ramgavakar, Special Police Chief Sandeep Patil, Deputy Conservator of Forests and Field Director of Navagaon-Nagzhira Jayramgouda R., Resident Deputy Collector Smita Belpatre, Deputy Director Pavan Jeph, Divisional Forest Officers Pradeep Patil and Rajendra Sadgir were present at the event.
Tigers inhabit fourteen countries worldwide, with the highest tiger population found in India, particularly in the Vidarbha region of Maharashtra. In Maharashtra, the tiger count increased from 190 in 2014 to 312 in the 2019 census, and currently, there are around 500 tigers. Vidarbha has the highest number of tigers in Maharashtra. Forest Minister Sudhir Munagantiwar stated that Vidarbha has become the tiger capital of the world. The Government of India has granted permission for the relocation of five tigers in the first phase.
According to them, today they announced the relocation of tigers to the Navagaon-Nagzhira project. They mentioned that there are currently 11 tigers in this location, with a capacity for up to 20 tigers. Furthermore, they stated that Navagaon-Nagzhira will become an attraction center for wildlife enthusiasts, researchers, and tourists.
In the next phase, they expressed their intention to relocate three more tigers. CCTV cameras have been installed in the Navagaon-Nagzhira project. Local youth, numbering around 400, have been trained and appointed as “Waghmitra” (Friends of Tigers). They will be rewarded with a stipend of two thousand rupees. Additionally, they mentioned that six modern vehicles will be provided for tourists.

Regarding Saras conservation, there is information about the allocation of 62 crores for the establishment of a court, and the minister stated that work has already begun. Malad and Ghodhad Bird Sanctuaries are also important for bird conservation, and the Forest Department is working on establishing a reserve for them. The population of vultures is decreasing, and the minister emphasized the need to educate future generations about vultures beyond stories and poems. Efforts are underway for the development of forests and the increase in water resources.
Navegaon Nagzira Tiger Reserve is located in the Gondia and Bhandara districts of Maharashtra, India. It was declared as a tiger project in 2013 and is the 46th tiger reserve in the country and the 5th in the state. The total area of Navegaon Nagzira Tiger Reserve is 656.36 square kilometers, with an additional buffer zone of 1241.24 square kilometers. According to the All India Tiger Estimation 2022 report, there are at least 11 adult tigers present in the Navegaon Nagzira Tiger Reserve. Currently, the tiger population in the reserve is relatively low, and the capacity for accommodating tigers is up to 20 adult individuals.

Under the initiative of Conservation Translocation of Tigers, a proposal has been made to translocate a total of 4-5 female tigers from the Brahmapuri region to the Navegaon Nagzira Tiger Reserve. In the first phase, two female tigers have been successfully translocated to the Nagzira Wildlife Sanctuary today. Both tigers have been released in the core area of the Navegaon Nagzira Tiger Reserve. After their release, both tigers will be closely monitored 24×7 using satellite GPS collars and VHF (Very High Frequency) technology. The entire monitoring process will be controlled and managed from the command and control room. After inspecting and assessing the translocated tigers at these two locations, other female tigers will also be translocated in a phased manner.
Through this initiative, the future of the Navegaon Nagzira Tiger Reserve can witness an increase in the tiger population, leading to the promotion of tourism within the project. It can also contribute to the creation of livelihood opportunities for the locals. Additionally, it can serve as an important measure to reduce human-wildlife conflict in the Brahmapuri region, which has a significant tiger population.

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