ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Not Even Crocodile Tears for Gujarat's Muggers

The manner in which we are overlooking how the mass relocation of crocodiles is taking place in Gujarat exposes our collective hypocrisies.

In order to accommodate the tourism at the statue of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel in Gujarat that is a few months old, nearly 500 mugger crocodiles—an animal that is considered to have attained the pinnacle of evolution—are being forcibly removed from their ponds. They are being captured in cage traps baited with fish and hauled away in pickup trucks, all apparently to make way for a seaplane service for tourists visiting the statue. It is hard to justify such an action since it is illegal as per the Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972 to touch a protected crocodile, let alone hundreds of them.

But, it becomes even harder to justify how we as a society are responding. Till a few months ago, people went out of their way to protest for the life of Avni, a tigress in Maharashtra that was accused of man-eating. While the protestors may not have seen the tigress (or even a tiger in the wild), the subject strongly appealed to them. But, the manner in which the wildlife act is being applied to essentially the same question—that of a potentially dangerous animal—exposes our collective hypocrisies.

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Updated On : 8th Feb, 2019

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