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Putting in our tuppence for the tiger
Leicestershire, UK: Tiger Awareness is one of many voluntary organisations engaged in the laudable but uphill task of saving this magnificent cat.
TIGERS ARE IN danger of becoming extinct in India in the next five years unless the government, the people and NGOs work together to save them.
Tiger Awareness, a UK-based voluntary organisation, was formed in 1998, to create awareness among the masses about the tiger being an endangered species. We have visited national parks in India and have seen tigers in some of them, though, to name the locations would give the information to the poachers and buyers that would almost certainly be the cause of the tigers death.
Tiger Awareness believes that if the tigers’ future is to ever become brighter then the Indian government has to allow help from around the world. And, not just accept their money but also give them some amount of authority to oversee tiger conservation efforts in the country. Though Project Tiger has tried this, it is toothless to prevent the demise of the tiger. 
There are censuses across the national parks and they have to be honest with the number of tigers that are found in the parks. The figures cannot be cooked or fudged, this may cost jobs but the mistakes need to be learnt and strong management must be given to all national parks if the national animal of India is to be saved. The actual numbers being talked about are as low as between 1200 and 1500, that is a long way from the 3000 being advertised over the last few years.
We work in the Sunderbans with our partners who are based in Kolkata. We have donated money to help build a hospital on the edge of the Sunderbans tiger reserve. Funds have been donated recently to supply a vehicle that is to be used in anti-poaching patrols and other conservation areas. We have also donated various other items, such as funds to help with water projects, sleeping bags and binoculars. If you would like to find out more about our projects please visit www.tigerawareness.co.uk.
We do not pretend to have all the solutions to the tiger’s plight, as it needs to have inputs from people at various levels, who live in close proximity to tiger reserves. It can work only if governments, courts at all levels and individuals who work in wildlife conservation, support Tiger Awareness.
Sariska has happened, this must not be allowed to happen again. I urge the government and people of India to act now to save the national animal of India.
[Philip Davis is the founder of Tiger Awareness]
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