HYDERABAD: Shooter Nawab Shafath Ali Khan of Wildlife Tranqui Force said his son Asghar should be given President’s national award for killing tigress Avni, a maneater, from a close range.
Asghar alleged that a death trap was laid for him as part of a larger conspiracy on November 2, 2018, when two veterinary doctors sprinkled urine of another tiger because of which Avni charged at him. Avni was shot dead in Yavatmal district of Maharashtra by Asghar on November 2 three years ago.
The father-son duo was reacting to the Supreme Court which said on Friday that the killing of Avni was carried out as per court orders as she was a maneater and declared the contempt case against Maharashtra forest officials filed by animal rights activist Sunita Dongre as invalid.
Shafath Ali said he and his son are ready to help Telangana forest department tranquilise the suspected maneater tiger A2 in Asifabad district.
“In one shot, Asghar killed the tigress T1, which was a confirmed maneater that killed 13 innocent humans outside the forest. How did human killings stop after she was shot if she was not a maneater? All procedures were scrupulously followed in the operation. Asghar should have been honoured with a national award by the President for his brave act of shooting a maneater. Activists want cheap publicity. Sadly, there is no one to wipe the tears of the 13 families,” Shafath Ali said.
Asghar alleged a debt trap was laid for him by some of his own team members. “It was a quick reflex action and proficiency in shooting that I was able to shoot the tigress. We risked our lives. Though several times I had spotted the tigress, I did not shoot it. We wanted to capture it alive. I have no pleasure of shooting it. It was an emergency situation when I had no option when it came charging at me,” he recalled.
Shafath Ali went on to say that Telangana government has not invited them to kill A2, which is believed to have killed two persons in Asifabad forests. “If they call us, we are ready to track it and assist the forest teams in tranquilising it. We had tranquilised the Brahmapuri maneater tiger that killed five persosn. Due to the noise made by some NGOs, the forest department must be keeping quiet,” he added.