Lok Sabha was informed on Tuesday that over hundred rhinos, 45 tigers and 85 elephants across the country had fallen prey to poachers in the last three years. Minister of State for Environment and Forests Anil Dave said as per the reports received by his ministry, 20 tigers were poached in 2013, 14 in 2014 and 12 in 2015.
Similarly, 2013-14 saw poaching of 46 elephants, while 2014-15 and 2015-2016 recorded killing of 21 and 22 pachyderms respectively. The poaching incidents were much higher regarding to rhinos. 2013-14 saw poaching of 41 rhinos, followed by 38 in 2014-15 and 23 in 2015-16, he said.
Dave said the government has taken several initiatives in order to check poaching by improving surveillance in Ratapani WildLife Santuary, reserves of Corbett and Kaziranga for protection of tigers. A Rhino Task Force has also been formed Kaziranga in Assam.
Responding to another question, the minister said as of July 18, a total number of 373 draft and final notifications of Eco-Sensitive Zones around Protected Areas around national parks and sanctuaries in the country have been published. He, however, denied of any scheme to set up the Tiger Bank for the conservation of wild cats.