There has been a considerable delay in the implementation of the ban on vehicular traffic on roads passing through reserved forest areas and wildlife sanctuaries continue to take a toll of wild animals in Belagavi district. A Lepoard cat (wildcat) was the latest to fall victim to a vehicle near Kankumbi under the Kankumbi Forest Range of Khanapur on the eastern side of the Western Ghats on Monday. A Sambar was mowed down in the Bhimgad Wildlife Sanctuary by a vehicle on the Sindhanoor-Hemmadaga State Highway 30 earlier.
Nine large mammals, including gaur and chital, have fallen prey to vehicles passing through the forests in these areas over the past five years.
Deputy Conservator of Belagavi Forest Division Vijay Mohan Raj wrote a month ago to Deputy Commissioner N. Jayaram seeking a ban on vehicular traffic in the reserved forests and wildlife sanctuaries to protect endangered species and other wildlife. Mr. Jayaram said that he was considering the request but is yet to issue an order.
A gaur (colloquially called Indian Bison) was crushed to death in 2014 near Kanakumbi on the Belagavi-Chorla State Highway. More recently a gaur was mowed down by an unidentified vehicle on NH 4. State Highway 34 (Alnavar- Ramnagar), which passes through Nagargali forest area, has witnessed several chital road kills in the recent years. NH 4A has also seen road kills of chital, jackal and other animals. Innumerable numbers of snakes are routinely crushed to death.
Source: The Hindu