Union minister Maneka Gandhi on Sunday took strong note of the killing of Avni, a tigress, in the forests of Maharashtra's Yavatmal, saying she was "deeply saddened by the way" the animal was "brutally murdered".
"I am definitely going to take up this case of utter lack of empathy for animals as a test case. Legally, criminally as well as politically," she asserted, sharing a series of tweets with the hashtag, #Justice4TigressAvni. "It is nothing but a straight case of crime."
Maneka said she will "take up the matter very strongly" with Maharashtra chief minister Devendra Fadnavis.
Tigress Avni, believed to have been responsible for 13 deaths in Maharashtra in the past two years, was shot dead in Maharashtra's Yavatmal district on Friday night as part of an operation in the forests of Borati. The Maharashtra forest department had been searching for the 'man-eater' tigress for nearly three months, which involved sniffer dogs, trap cameras, drones and a hang-glider, expert trackers, sharp-shooters and around 200 ground personnel.
A numbers of online petitions came up in September after the Maharashtra Forest Department issued a shoot-at-sight order for Avni after an inquiry declared that she as a "man-eater" tigress. The decision to kill Avni, however, generated a flurry of online petitions, seeking mercy for the tigress. The forest department order was first challenged in the...