8 cheetahs to be brought by air to MP's Kuno National Park on Sep 17

12:32 PM Sep 12, 2022 | PTI |

Bhopal: Eight cheetahs will be brought to Madhya Pradesh’s Kuno-Palpur National Park by helicopter on September 17 morning, a senior official said on Monday.


Prime Minister Modi will release them into quarantine enclosures the same day as part of the cheetah reintroduction programme, he said.

The cheetahs will be brought in a cargo flight from southern African country Namibia to Jaipur in Rajasthan and a helicopter will further bring them to Kuno-Palpur on September 17 morning, ahead of the PM’s event, principal chief conservator of forest J S Chauhan told PTI. Asked how many helicopters will be be used to transport the cheetahs, Chauhan said it would depend on the type of aircraft deployed for the purpose. If a smaller aircraft is deployed, there will be two sorties to shift the felines from Jaipur to Kuno-Palpur, he said. “This is being decided by the Centre and the Ministry of Defence,” Chauhan said.

The PM will release the cheetahs into the enclosures the same day, he said. “We have set up six small quarantine enclosures as per the legal mandate required during the shifting of animals from one continent to another,” the official said. He said according to the protocol, the animals need to be quarantined for a month each before and after shifting from one continent to another. Asked about the age of the cheetahs to be reintroduced in the KNP, Chauhan said he does not have the information as officials at the Centre are having negotiations on this with the Namibian authorities. The last cheetah died in the country in 1947 in Korea district in present day Chhattisgarh, which was earlier part of Madhya Pradesh, and the species was declared extinct from India in 1952.

The ‘African Cheetah Introduction Project in India’ was conceived in 2009.



A plan to introduce the big cat in the KNP by November last year had suffered a setback due to the COVID-19 pandemic, officials said.


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