Article by: Hrishikesh Karandikar
Panna, the jewel city of India had not just emeralds that attracted people, but they also had the Royal Bengal Tiger. A jewel that was and still is, priceless. For all the Nature lovers and the Tiger Poachers…
In 2009, Panna made headlines – Panna was Tiger-less. All the tigers had fallen prey to the poachers, killed for their skin, teeth, eyes, tongue, bones and everything… It was a shame for a tiger reserve to have lost all its tigers right under the nose of the Forest Department. They were desperate to change their fate, to overcome their loss, to make a comeback that would be so remarkable that even after years, people will talk about it.
So they came up with a plan. A plan to reintroduce Tigers that will repopulate Panna and bring back the glory it had lost. They got 3 Tigers – A female from Bandhavgarh named T1, another female from Kanha named T2 and a dominant male from Pench T3 who later on went on to pass on his genes from generation to generation! A legacy that can’t be wiped again.
In April 2010, T1 gave birth to her first litter of cubs, a day that brought a gust of joy that spread all across Panna! From that point, a few more tigers we’re relocated to help boost the process of repopulating Panna.
Now after 10 years, Panna has over 50 tigers roaming around, in the same territories where the original tigers once roamed.
There are many cubs scattered across the vast landscape of Panna. And it’s up to them to keep the legacy of the first generation tigers – T1, T2 and T3- going on and on, till the river flows through Panna… They are the future of Panna.