There are strict regulations to be adhered to in all wildlife sanctuaries to respect the space of the animals and not disturb them in any way possible. But it seems for some people, even strict guidelines mean nothing. In a video that has gone viral, a few men can be heard shouting and trying to scare away lions while they were hunting.
The video shows at least three lions getting angry as some people intruded into their space and started misbehaving. As the men kept shouting and whistling, the lions left their prey on the spot and walked away.
The authorities are trying to ascertain how these men reached so close to the lions in the Gir Forest National Park. They are also trying to take the help of the cyber cell to nab the culprits who misbehaved in the sanctuary. "We are reaching out to the cyber cell to trace the mobile and its location from which the video has been recorded. After tracing the location, we will try to find out the reason why these people did what they did. Appropriate action will be taken after the probe," Ramesh Jalodhara, forest officer at Gir said.
Gir National Park attracts a large number of tourists to witness the Asiatic lion, as this is the sole place all across the world where these creatures are presently found. Once extinct, their numbers have been recovered owing to the conservation efforts.
There are several rules to enter the park and tourists are allowed to enter only after taking the necessary permits. The park specifically states that people need to drive slowly in the park so that while one can see, observe and enjoy the most but at the same time, the wildlife is not disturbed. Driving off the track is not also allowed. The rules state that wild animals should be respected and a safe distance should be maintained from them. "You are in their home and they get first priority," say the rules.
Here are some do's and don'ts for tourists:
- Listen to the music of the forest instead of your car stereo or transistor. The quieter you are, the more the chances of your seeing wildlife.
- Wear dull-coloured clothes. Bright colours alarm most wild animals and they flee.
- Do not smoke or light camp fires in the forest. Accidental fires can destroy this wonderful jungle in no time.
- Don’t get off your vehicle at any point in the Park. This is for your own safety and the safety of wildlife.
- Consuming alcohol or visiting sanctuary under the influence of alcohol is strictly prohibited.
- Help keep the park pollution-free. While inside the park, please put your entire non-biodegradable litter (tin cans, plastic, glass bottles, metal foils etc.) into the bag provided and dispose of it on your way out.
- Night visit to the sanctuary is strictly prohibited & Punishable.
- Do not disturb wild animals by blowing horns, playing music or talking loudly.
- Don't keep private wireless, walky talky or same type handset during sanctuary visit, otherwise punishable.