Apoorva Joshi

PhD student - Michigan State University; Independent journalist - environment, science and international news.

Fellow - International League of Conservation Writers.

Member - Society of Environmental Journalists, International Communication Association.

Ranthambore-Tiger Watch-VTP-session2

well. um..this one's about-read the title na!?!! hehe...neway- so this ..as in last thursday, i.e.-7th sept.2006, was VTP-session2. we were actually supposed to begin our decided syllabus... but since not all the volunteers cud make it, we discussed the recent visit of some volunteers and instructors to Ranthambore National Park- in june. this was a project,supposed 2last till the end of september..but unfortunately, after their batch, no one else was allowed... mainly coz the forest department knows full well, that nething wrong seen-is going to b reported...n that puts them in terrible trouble!so thats why they reluctantly allowed these guys to stay their 15days. they lived in chowkis, exactly how the forest guards live there... not in a camp site as we usually do, so no facilities..lets say- hardly ne ... so there were so many incidents told to us..narrated... very well. they sighted a Ratel- which has been recorded there after 20years!- it sounds like a snake i know- thats what i thought too... n so i naturally jumped at the sound of "Ratel"...but turns out its a reallly rare mammal... completely nocturnal...kinda looks like a skunk but different. we were told of how cattle grazing was becoming such a huge problem in the core area... and loggin ... n since cattle grazing takes place where Tiger movements have been spotted, that gives the Tigers away... hence its money galore for those disgusting poachers... u c the problems r all inter linked... one gives rise to the other and so.. the National Park is now facing a lot of threat. there r superstitious villagers who visit the temple on the fort... bcoz since their childhood they've taught that -that very god protects them-so they all cum in bunches of 50 n 60...n not only liter the Park, but they pose such a big threat to the wildlife in the Park.there were originally 16 villages in the Park... n thanks a lot to Sir Fateh Singh Rathore... 12 of them have been re-located. but the 4 that still remain refuse to budge. they say that they don't mind moving... but they r given absolutely no incentives... to move. the government doesnt fulfill ne of their demands... the size of land, electricity... nothing. then why shud they move? they have a point yes. but then the same forest department that complains of excess civilisation within the Park, shud c to it that those ppl, once re-located r given the necessary amenities... its pure common sense.. but no!!! who will work! why work when u can pretend u r n keep all the money ur getting? who will want to take pains and make some effort??? when Sir Fateh Singh Rathore... stepped forward, Ranthambore bcame a National Park...n now, after 35 years of being field director of the Park, now that he's retired, when he's still willing to step fwd n help out, no one is letting him- can u believe the stupidity??!!? u know why they wont let him help? n take charge? bcoz- its simple- he's gona report evrything! he's gona report all the shit thats goin on in there that im aware of, the volunteers r, wildlife organisations r, but the Forest Department- n the prestigious Government of India- mind u- they r also completely aware of all the illegal trades that r takin place within the Park... but they r doing nothing. out of own free will by the way- not bcoz they cant, but bocz they simply wont.i think they deserve to b thrown out of the country and transferred to russia or siberia or afghanistan maybe... where they can b kept in some ... secret prison... specially for wildlife prisoners... its a far fetched thought i know... but may work!!!!!!!!its jst that these guys have gota learn man- that they're doing a really important job, n messin it up n sellin it for money is disgusting n pathetic. n when u sell the country's wildlife for money, u suck- according to me. we were discussin how the forest department is inefficient n how we need so much more man power- n woman power too haaan!!!- to get things under control! to bring the country at a stage where awareness is priority number one. n mehnat- number 2. there were kraits,cobras, n non venomous snakies too... but for the first time man- its wasnt the snakes that i was all geared up about.. it was the condition of Wildlife... as Boss said- u gota b an allrounder... even in Wildlife- not jst Reptiles... evrything. u gota hv passion for all of em... n i didnt need to b told... it was already there na... so the passion jst went higher n higher... n reached this stage now-where its jst bcum my life...along with a certain Grizzly Bear.... all in all... this session completely went in us being educated on the differences betvn reserves, national parks, sanctuaries, bla bla.... we were told how much we are gona have to put into this... the effort, the time, the passion. all of it. n no matter what. one thing that cannot disappear is- the unity. -thats what i feel... coz if that goes away, n if im protesting against sum xyz guy for sum xyz thing he did... then who'l support me? so unity- bigggg factor.n for the first time i realised that jst being pasionate makes only 90% of the deal. the rest is all on the strength... to convince, to work, to oppose the wrong, to stand up 4wats right,even if ur alone-which ive been doin since birth i think!!!! so...for me, its reall imp. that i go on with what im doin... coz ive seen sooooooooo many examples .... when the person begins a profession in which he/she has no interest what so evr... ive seen these ppl regret their decision all their life!!! n i NEVER want 2 regret not doin sumthng... that my frend- is one reason ive done sooooo many things... i dont wana tell my kids when im 40... that...im sorry- i duno wat ur talkin bout- nevr dun it b4!.... i wana b able to say a mighty lot bout evrything under the sun!!!!!!!n besides.... i wana b able to feel satisfied... at the end... that- yes!!! i did evrything i wanted to.. n did it well... n i did the right things in life... i wana b able 2 tell myself that... ki-yaar- yeah. u did it... n u rocked! now ur..well.. uve finished all ur missions n fulfilled evry promise u made to urself... so.. now u got nothing to regret or left incomplete... i wana b able to say proudly- i was, am , n will always be the maddest, most insane person there was! wavering fromt he topic..though... that was about it... we did a lot of wildlife talk... and whos goin where ...n amboli...n all.. n then there was that green keelback skin- Macropisthodon plumbicolour- or the grass snake. reminds me...i need to start with taxo now.. n skins too... !anyway...as of now. i think im fine doin what i am... so, till VTP session 3- when we begin the cut out syllabus... i take leave... saying this- u may b doin nothing in ur life, if ur unsatisfied- rediscover urself... n mayb ul find ur cut out to do sumthng no one else can do... n u can- very well!!!!- jst general encouragement yaar.... haha!... i used 2 tell myself that in the 6th standard.neway... so... bye byesssss!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! keep slitherin.... lotsa love- AJ.n hey!!!! remember- pls.... CONSERVE WILDLIFE- IF U CAN'T DONT KILL IT AT LEAST-LIKE THOSE PATHETIC FOOLS AT ... DAMN.THATS IT! FOCUS PPL!

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