Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday, September 17, released the first batch of translocated Cheetahs from Namibia into the Kuno National Park in Sheopur district of Madhya Pradesh. Union Minister for Environment, Forests and Climate Change Bhupender Yadav had signed an MoU with Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister of Namibia Netumbo Nandi-Ndaitwah under which this translocation of the big cats was made possible. The Cheetahs were declared extinct in India in 1952. According to India’s Environment Ministry, “The main goal of the Cheetah reintroduction project in India is to establish viable cheetah metapopulation in India that allows the cheetah to perform its functional role as a top predator and provides space for the expansion of the cheetah within its historical range thereby contributing to its global conservation efforts.”
PM Narendra Modi released eight Namibian cheetahs on September 17, which incidentally is also his birthday, as part of the campaign to reintroduce the species in the country after seven decades.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Madhya Pradesh CM Shivraj Singh Chouhan at the Kuno National Park.
A total of eight Cheetahs were flown into India from Namibia and were released in the wild. The cheetahs were brought on a special flight of Terra Avia, an airline based at Chisinau, Moldova in Europe that operates chartered passenger and cargo flights.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who is celebrating his birthday, released three cheetahs in quarantine enclosures of the Kuno National Park in Madhya Pradesh around 11.30 am.
"It is unfortunate that we declared cheetahs extinct in 1952, but for decades no constructive efforts were made to reintroduce them in India. Now, with new strength and vigour, the country has embarked on the project of reviving the population of cheetahs during this 'amrit kaal'," PM said in his speech targeting the previous government.
The government launched the 'Cheetah Mitra' initiative and roped in volunteers to raise awareness about the ambitious Cheetah Project.
The Kuno National Park is situated on the northern side of Vidhyachal mountains and is spread across 344 sq km.
Prime Minister meets the 'Cheetah Mitra' — volunteers who'll raise awareness about the big cats among the local inhabitants.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday said the Project Cheetah, under which the felines were reintroduced in the country after they became extinct seven decades ago, is his government's endeavour towards environment and wildlife conservation.
PM Modi speaks with volunteers, Cheetah Mitra, who pledged to guard the Cheetah's and raise awareness about the species.