Water points in Greater Gir dry up
The Times Of India
Rajkot: Asiatic lions are facing tough times in this scorching heat as drinking water points set up for the wild cats have gone dry in several parts of Greater Gir. Wildlife activists have warned of beginning a protest fast if the forest department doesn't start filling up these water holes immediately. There are 29 drinking water points in Greater Gir area of Amreli district out of which 19 are dry while filling up the remaining others is irregular, sources said.
In Liliya-Krakach, where a sizeable number of lions live, the artificial drinking water points for lions in Nana Liliya, Bhorigda, Vidi, Shedhavadar and Sukhdham have dried up. Other water points in Rajula area like Dantardi, Patva, Samdhiyala, Victor, Verai and Powaiya too have no water. Situation in Jafrabad too is grim. There are two windmills that are in working condition to fill the tank with groundwater. However, this water is salty and unfit for lions to drink.
Manoj Joshi, one of the activists working for lion conservation in Amreli, has warned that he would begin a fast if the department doesn't fill the tank. "Lions are habituated to come for drinking water at these points. While their population has increased, the water points have been reduced," Joshi claimed.
Another wildlife activist, Aata Vagh, said, "It is because of the negligence of the forest department that lions suffer." Dr Sakkira Begum, deputy conservator of forests at Amreli, said, "We are taking care that lions get adequate drinking water. We haven't filled up few points intentionally because some people here are organizing illegal lion shows when they come to drink water."