A Division Bench of the Supreme Court on Monday said that it was not against relocating African cheetah from Namibia to Nauradehi Wildlife Sanctuary in Madhya Pradesh.
The Bench comprising Justice SA Bobde and Justice BR Gavai expressed this view as it supported a motion put forward by the National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA).
The court, however, posted the matter for further hearing and a final decision would be taken only after two weeks.
The court said that it was not sure if the cheetah would survive in India or not where the weather and climatic conditions are much different from Africa.
The NTCA has also assured of developing an action plan for the measures to be taken before the cheetah is relocated.
It has submitted a list of all potential sites to where the cheetah could be relocated.
The NTCA further said that the Nauradehi Wildlife Sanctuary has several animals like leopards, tigers, and also lions and hence it can easily accommodate the African cheetah.
It may be mentioned here that the NTCA on February 22 last had informed the Supreme Court about its plan on African cheetahs citing International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) report.
The IUCN provides inputs to governments and institutions on biodiversity, climate change and sustainable development and it had given its green signal for the relocation.
It is worth mentioning here that the Asiatic cheetah, which was a native of the Asian continent is a critically endangered species and is found only in Iran.
Today, only 50 Asiatic cheetahs are left in the world.
The African continent once had several thousand cheetahs, which today have decreased to a few hundred.
In fact, wildlife experts have identified a few locations that can support the African cheetah population and hence they are supporting this relocation bid.
The African cheetah is the fastest land animal and it can reach up to a speed of 12 kmph.
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