City Reports

Ranthambore’s most feared tiger dies, hours after relocation

The exact cause of death will be determined after a post-mortem examination.

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May 10, 2023, 4:17 pm

tiger cheeku dies

Tiger Cheeku at Udaipur park after relocation.

JAIPUR: T-104, also known as Cheeku, one of the most feared tigers of Ranthambore National Park due to his deadly history of having killed three people, was pronounced dead on Tuesday night at the Sajjangarh Biological Park in Udaipur.

The tiger had been relocated from Ranthambore, Sawaimadhopur, on the same day.

The tiger was tranquilized around 6:35 am on Tuesday in the enclosure at Bhid Naka in Ranthambore, according to information from the Forest Department.

The journey to Udaipur from Ranthambore began around 8:00 am, with the tiger reaching the Sajjangarh Biological Park between 1:30 and 2:00 pm.

The tiger was closely monitored in its cage upon arrival and was finally released into the park at approximately 8:00 pm. The Forest Department reports that Cheeku, once released, retreated to a nearby pond around 10:00 pm and remained in the water for roughly an hour.

When the tiger emerged from the water around 11:00 pm, it soon settled down in a spot, under the watchful eyes of the Forest Department personnel.

However, by 11:30 pm, when the patrolling forest personnel returned to check on the tiger, they found it lying motionless. Despite their attempts to rouse the tiger, it remained unresponsive and was subsequently declared dead. As of now, officials from the Sajjangarh Biological Park have not issued any official statement regarding the incident.

The unexpected death of T-104, who was deemed to be in good health upon its transfer from Ranthambore to the Sajjangarh Biological Park, has raised questions about the Forest Department’s handling of the case. The cause of death remains unknown as the Forest Department has not released any information to date.

“I have been informed about the death of T-104 at Udaipur’s Sajjangarh Biological Park,” said Mohit Gupta, the DFO of Ranthambore Tiger Reserve I, “but I don’t have much information about the case.”

A forest department official said that they discovered the tiger’s death on Wednesday morning. Despite the tiger having been transported in an air-conditioned vehicle due to the intense heat, and having consumed water and food upon arrival, its health suddenly deteriorated. The exact cause of death will be determined after a post-mortem examination.

First published: May 10, 2023
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