Jiaur Rahmam: New adventure
Guwahati, Feb. 3: Jiaur Rahman, Assam’s very own Jim Corbett, has set out on yet another venture to capture a “man-eating tiger”, this time in Uttar Pradesh.
The 65-year-old hunter, who has captured 64 Royal Bengal Tigers and 16 leopards and killed 100 tigers, including 22 maneaters in Assam and Madhya Pradesh, has been invited by the Uttar Pradesh forest department to capture a Royal Bengal Tiger in Azamgarh.
The principal chief conservator of forest (wildlife) in Assam, M.C. Malakar, said the UP government had come calling a few days ago with the request for a few elephants to help capture the tiger.
“When we were told about the situation, we suggested that elephants could be of hardly any help unless there was an expert to plan the entire operation,” he added.
The Assam forest department suggested the name of Rahman, who has decades of experience in hunting, to carry out the operation. “We are hopeful that he will be successful,” Malakar said.
Rahman’s son, Guddu, said from the family’s residence at Mazbat in Udalguri district that his father had left for Uttar Pradesh about a week ago with one of his assistants.
He said his father had given up killing the majestic animals long back. “Nowadays, he only captures tigers, be it a maneater or not,” he added.
The principal chief conservator (wildlife) of Uttar Pradesh, B.K. Patnaik, said over phone that two tigers have been creating terror in the state — one in Azamgarh and the other in Faizabad. The distance between the two places is about 300km.
“The tiger trapper from Assam is helping us to trap the tiger in Azamgarh. The tiger killed a person on December 31,” he added.
Patnaik said the tiger had probably strayed from Jharkhand or Bihar and was prowling in the human-inhabited areas in Azamgarh. “It is taking shelter in a cropland,” he added.
It is not only Rahman who has gone to Uttar Pradesh to help the state forest department capture maneaters.
Prasanta Boro, an expert from the Kaziranga-based Centre for Wildlife Rehabilitation and Conservation, also left for Uttar Pradesh on Friday. “I am on my way to Faizabad. The situation here is tense with the tiger becoming a terror for the villagers. It has reportedly killed four persons in the last two-and-a-half months,” Boro told The Telegraph over phone.
He said another expert from the Wildlife Trust of India (WTI), Anjan Talukdar, who hails from Assam but is now based in New Delhi, has also arrived in Uttar Pradesh to take stock of the situation.
Rathin Barman, the WTI’s operational head in the Northeast, said since Assam had a large population of big cats, its people were more experienced in dealing with tigers than in any other part of the country.
“After we heard about the maneating tigers in Uttar Pradesh, we decided to send two of our most experienced persons to catch the animals,” he added.