Inferno rages in Bandhavgarh National Park

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Umaria, MP, Apr 21 (UNI) Wildlife is under threat by an inferno that has been raging for the past six days in this district's Bandhavgarh National Park.

Park managers claimed that all efforts were underway to douse the blaze which spread to a fresh area today. The file had been brought under control in many areas. However, the fire spread to Khitauli Range's Domabeed at 1000 hrs today.

About 100 members of the Eco-development Committee, 50 employees of Project Tiger and 400 others were battling the inferno and tankers being rushed to the zone.

Accusing the park management of carelessness, wildlife expert and former MLA Narendra Pratap Singh told UNI here, ''With the onset of summer, arrangements should be made for removing dry leaves beside roads.'' The blaze spread yesterday to Bamera in Pataur Sanctuary and Khitauli Range's Salkhaniya Beed. The inferno broke out in the tourist zone on April 16 and spread over about 360 hectares affecting Uttar Gohni, Bahauni, Sukhadem, Arharia and Rajbahra areas. It enveloped Kalwaha Range's Chechpur and Uttar Mehnawa on April 19.

An elephant and some smaller animals were killed in a similar fire in 1989. In 1999-2000, another blaze had caused damage.


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