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Tiger spotted in Guj after 3 decades, govt confirms presence

Press Trust of India  |  Ahmedabad 

The government has confirmed the presence of a in the state, days after a man claimed he saw the big cat crossing a road in district.

said on Tuesday that the carnivore was caught on cameras set up by the forest department in that area.

"It has now been confirmed. A in the age-group of 7 to 8 years has been seen in district," Vasava told reporters in Gandhinagar.

The striped animal was last seen in in 1989. Subsequent surveys carried out every four years by the central government showed no presence of in the state, he said.

A local government school had last week claimed that he saw a tiger crossing a road near Boriya village in Mahisagar, around 120 km from here, on February 6.

The clicked the animal's picture on his mobile phone and shared it with friends on

The photo soon went viral and based on the teacher's claim, the forest department department set up several camera traps in that area.

Vasava said the tiger might have come to from any of the neighbouring states of Rajasthan, or Maharashtra, where the striped animals are found.

"The government has said that a tiger has gone missing from Ujjain. It is possible that the tiger seen here can be from any of these neighbouring states which have tigers," the stated.

He said the will now contact the (NTCA), which has the data of tigers across the country, to ascertain where the feline came from.

The (WII) will also be involved to carry out a survey in the area to find out if this region is conducive for tigers, he said.

"We now agree that there is a tiger in Gujarat. WII will study if the area could be developed for tigers. We are also seeking NTCA's guidance," he said.

Vasava said it was yet to be ascertained how long and where the lone tiger had been roaming in Gujarat.

"We are yet to ascertain if that area was the tiger's permanent residence or whether it migrated from neighbouring states. It is certain that Gujarat is also a part of tiger's natural corridor," he said.

of Forests (Wildlife) Akshay Saxena said evidences like pug marks and scats, as well as hair and scratch marks on a tree had to some extent confirmed the tiger's presence in the region.

"Later, camera traps were set up and we have now got visual evidence of a tiger in the area. It is not necessary that we will find the tiger in the same area, so we will continue to keep a watch," he said.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Tue, February 12 2019. 16:30 IST