Vadodara, Dec 8 (PTI) A noted naturalist has opposed the Centre''s move to relocate Asiatic lions from Gujarat''s Gir Forest to Madhya Pradesh.
The Narendra Modi government should not make any compromise on this issue and must oppose the move, Lav Kumar Khacher said here.
"Under no circumstances, the Madhya Pradesh government''s request (endorsed by the Centre) for relocating one or two prides of lions from Gir to Sheopur district should be accepted," the 80-year-old said.
Asiatic lions found only in Gir can not survive in the different environment and geographic conditions in Madhya Pradesh, he said.
It is the Centre''s almost decade-old proposal to relocate some Gir lions to a 300 sq km forest at Kunopalpur in Sheopur district. The plan is devised to save lions from a potential future disaster that could wipe them off as all of them are concentrated in the Gir forest.
According to the latest census conducted in April this year, there are 411 Asiatic lions in Gir. In contrast, the tiger population in MP was dwindling fast because of poaching and shrinking habitat, Khacher said.