Stories of the Melghat Forest by a forester


For Prakash Thosre, being posted in the Melghat forest triggered a ardour for writing on all that he noticed: grass-eating tigers, the bhulan vel climber that makes you lose sense of course, and mini markets that serve up spicy native meals

Prakash Thosre grew up in the jungle. His father was in the Indian Forest Service, retiring in 1976, the similar yr Prakash cleared the UPSC examination. His first posting was in the Melghat Tiger Reserve, Amravati, Maharashtra. “I was longing to come to this area which I loved so much from my childhood,” he says, remembering the undulating terrain, with a new scene opening every time the kuchha highway took a flip. “I don’t think I would have wanted to explore any other tiger reserve,” he says, remembering the assorted wildlife and the peaceable folks throughout the seven years he’d spent there in several tenures.

In his preliminary years in service, Prakash took tales of the timber and beasts of nature to high school youngsters and senior residents, by way of his talks. He’d additionally write quick tales — about 50 of them — on wildlife in English and Marathi newspapers, however it is just after he retired in 2012 as Principal Chief Conservator of Forests, Maharashtra, that he has had the time to pen a ebook. “Numerous nature-lovers enjoyed these articles and requested that the stories be compiled in the form of a book,” he says.

Prakash speaks on his work in Melghat, and on his ebook, The Melghat Trail: Walking the Wilds with a Forester. Rich with anecdotes that took him two years to write down, the 262-page ebook, with 41 chapters takes us on a roller-coaster journey of the jungle, by way of uncommon encounters with wild animals. In his foreword, Supreme Court Chief Justice SA Bobde calls it “The Jungle Book of recent times.”

In this interview Prakash talks about life as a forester.

What are some experiences you’ve described in the ebook?

“During my Melghat tenure I met tiger twice in an eyeball to eyeball scenario, a leopard twice at hand-shaking distance and the lethal sloth bear charged at me as soon as. Once, in an open Jeep, we bumped into a bison. We have been nearly 5 to six ft away from the monster and stood in the Jeep for about 20 odd minutes. A slight improper transfer from our facet would have value us our lives that evening.

A leopard at Melghat Forest, Maharashtra  
| Photo Credit:
Prakash Thosre

What has your expertise with leopards been?

My interplay with leopards was all through my service profession. A movie was ready for the National Geographic Channel during which I performed the position of a forest officer who’s summoned to kind out the leopard drawback. This one hour movie was additionally dubbed in lots of international languages. There have been hardly any pictures in the movie which we had stage managed. There is a shot the place, in a tribal habitation, a lady little one is killed by a leopard, and is seen carrying the useless physique. There’s one other of a watchman at Film City crying inconsolably. His mom was killed by a leopard. The precise leopard sightings have been all really shot on location as they have been occurring.

Are we doing the greatest we are able to for our tiger safety?

In 1993, throughout a world convention, it was predicted by consultants throughout the world that the tiger would vanish eternally from our planet, together with from the Indian wilderness, by the flip of the century. But the actual fact that the tiger nonetheless survives in lots of areas in India speaks volumes about the efforts made right here. However, we’ve to rigorously observe these: Compensation for the loss of particular person or property needs to be promptly performed; enough monetary provision needs to be made for actions like shifting of villages from the tiger habitats; inflexible anti-poaching measures should be taken; the involvement of the native inhabitants in tiger safety is the requirement of the day.

What do you concentrate on tourism in tiger reserves?

As of now, the tourism in tiger reserves in Maharashtra is kind of balanced and the vacationers coming to tiger areas are typically taken for a drive solely in the tourism zone space. With the passage of time common eco-tourists have began discovering themselves in an attention-grabbing position of a protector of tigers in lots of areas. So, a restricted eco-tourism in the specifically carved out areas by educated eco-tourists holding an alert eye, can straight assist tiger conservation.

The Melghat Trail: Walking the Wilds with a Forester (Partridge Publishing), is accessible on Amazon.in

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