BHOPAL: The National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA) has on Friday issued a revised order regarding formation of the special Cheetah Task Force (CTF) amidst resentment among a section of IFS officers over the previous one. One of the important roles of this force would be to monitor hunting skills and adaptation of Cheetahs to the habitat of Kuno National Park.
The ministry of environment, forest and climate change has constituted the task force for monitoring cheetah introduction in Kuno National Park, Madhya Pradesh and other suitable designated areas.
This force will review, progress and monitor the health status of Cheetah, upkeep of the quarantine & soft release enclosures, protection status of entire area, adherence to the defined protocols by forest & veterinary officials and advice on cheetah introduction in India to the Madhya Pradesh Forest Department and NTCA on status of Cheetah with respect to overall health, behaviour and their upkeep. It will also monitor hunting skills and adaptation of cheetahs to the habitat.
Further, the members of this task force will have to monitor release of cheetah from quarantine bomas to soft release enclosures and then to grass land and open forest areas. Decide upon opening of the cheetah habitat for eco-tourism and suggest regulations in this regard, suggest and advise on development of tourism infrastructure in the fringe areas of Kuno National Park and other Protected Areas.
The task force has also been mandated to regularly interact withcheetah mitras and local communities for their awareness raising and also, involvement in protection of cheetahs in particular and area in general.
NTCA would facilitate the working and render all necessary help. Officers informed that this task force shall be in-force for a period of two years and will hold at least one meeting every month and may appoint a subcommittee to regularly visit the cheetah introduction area as and when decided by them.
Members of the Task Force are as follows:
Principal secretary (Forests)
Principal secretary (Tourism)
Principal chief conservator of forests & head of forest force
Principal chief conservator of forests (wildlife) & chief wildlife warden
Alok Kumar, retd. principal chief conservator of forests (wildlife) & chief
Dr Amit Mallick, inspector general, NTCA, New Delhi
Dr Vishnu Priya, scientist, Wildlife Institute of India, Dehradun
Abhilash Khandekar, member MP SBWL, Bhopal
Subhoranjan Sen, APCCF- Wildlife – member convener