Don't Rob the honest tourist.....

Posted by: Shivir chordia on

Sure we get all kinds of tourists....noisy, unsensitive and touristy kinda crowd....sure they dont understand the nuances involved in wildlife and eco tourism...but they are there because they have some liking for wildlife hence choose to be at a wildlife destination....the degree of interest is questionable...but the intent is true.

With this i hear from friends from bandhavgarh that the new field director has made numerous changes or new rules that have a direct impact on tourists and moreso on wildlife.

 One primary change is a drastic increase in entry charges or proposed increase in charges...to be honest I am for this change as there is a need to shore up revenues for the betterment of the Park.

Second change is jeeps have to follow a set route within a stipualted time...as I hear the routes are long, and do not cover the prime viewing areas, and in case , by chance they happen to have a sighting of a mammal or bird then they need to speed up to reach centre point in the stipulated time...this leads to little time to enjoy wildlife and moreso you find numerous jeeps speeding within the park to meet timelines....how does this help wildlife ....in the midst of the National Park.

No tiger shows...most welcome rule...as the intent not to the distrub the tiger and tax the elephant is welcome....

Routes to be followed Morning post centre point and evening....this is unfair as you are curtailing opportunities for the tourist who has paid you more money to see and enjoy wildlife...

At this juncture I would like to question the thoughts of the Management...

1. Is the Indian tourist harmful to the wildlife ? You cant charge him more money and deprieve him of value ?

2. Tiger Shows are stressfull for the tiger ....so are speeding jeeps criss crossing the park to the whole eco system trying to make up time ?

3. There is a need to be sensitive to the tiger numbers and its protection ....but keeping them away from the honest tourist who has a camera in most cases than a gun unlike a poacher ...who would you bet on to increase tiger numbers....and alas who do you save the tiger for....the people...the country ...or the VIP?

4. The truth is and can be disputed that poaching will not happen in tourist areas...during seasons...its always in buffer areas, rainy seasons when the chances of managing a park is difficult....hence why would you not want to encourage tourism...is the policy of the government to stop tourism in parks...such directives will stop people choosing parks...

5. If there is a concern of tourists restrict the number of jeeps...why do you allow 75 jeeps in Tala...why cant you make it 25..why is the concern not around these figures.

The Park and its management know whats right and correct for the Park...but as a honest tourist i feel robbed..........I visit the Park for the mythological splendour, the architecture, the birds the mammals and possibly amongst the last few places we can see the Tiger in its natural behavior...I am harmless, I am honest like every other tourist...then why Rob us ?