- According to State Forest Minister Vijay Shah, the world’s fastest land animal, the cheetah, which was declared extinct in India in 1952, would be reintroduced India in November 2021 at the Kuno National Park in MP.
- Last cheetah was spotted in India, which died in Chhattisgarh in the year 1947, and was declared extinct in India in 1952. The WII also proposed a Cheetah reintroduction proposal a few years ago.
- Kuno is located in the Chambal region and has an area of around 750 square kilometres, according to the State Forest Minister. It features a Cheetah-friendly atmosphere.
PROJECT CHEETAH –
- The Supreme Court has given its clearance for the experimental introduction of African Cheetahs to suitable habitats in India.
- The work of establishing an enclosure for roughly 10 cheetahs has begun, according to Madhya Pradesh Forest Minister Vijay Shah, and will be completed by August 2021. The ten cheetahs, five of which are females, will be transported from South Africa to Kuno in the Sheopur District.
- In June and July 2021, Indian officials would travel to South Africa for training and sensitization, and the Cheetahs will be transported in October and November 2021, according to the plan.
- According to the approved timeline issued by the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, the tentative budget outlay of ‘Project Cheetah’ for the current fiscal year is Rs. 1,400 lakh, according to the State Forest Minister.
- In June 2021, the National Tiger Conservation Authority will release funds to Madhya Pradesh and the Wildlife Institute of India in Dehradun for the project.
HABITAT APPROVAL BY SOUTH AFRICA –
- On April 26, 2021, a South African expert and scientists from the Wildlife Institute of India visited the Kuno National Park. They looked over the facilities and habitats that had been set up for the introduction of African Cheetahs. The park has been authorised by the experts, and the Cheetahs are now on their way.
- WII experts had previously visited four locations in Madhya Pradesh in search of the optimal habitat for introducing African Cheetah to India.
- Juno National Park, Madhav National Park in Shivpuri District, Gandhi Sagar Sanctuary on the northern border of Mandsaur and Neemuch districts, and Nauradehi Sanctuary in Sagar district were all visited by the crew.
- While speaking about the tiger reintroduction programme at Panna Tiger Reserve in 2009, Additional Principal Chief Conservator of Forests J S Chauhan mentioned that MP had formerly been home to Cheetahs. He went on to say that the state has a proven track record in animal relocation.