Capturing the king’s dwindling pride
In order to celebrate the ongoing Wildlife Week, India International Centre (IIC) has organised a photo exhibition and talk show on the endangered Asiatic lions which will continue till 6 October.
The exhibition consists of 30 selected photogaphs taken over a period of seven years by wildlife enthusiasts N. Shiva Kumar, Sharad Khanna and Coomar N Carthik.
India has been the only country in the world to have five big cat species until recently. While Cheetahs have lost their race to survive in India, leopards and tigers are struggling on a daily basis. Snow leopards are barely surviving in their Himalayan abode and the Asiatic lions are languishing only in their small territory in Gir, Gujarat.
The last surviving population of the Asiatic lions occupies a compact tract of dry deciduous forest and grassy scrublands in Gir national park.
However, certain plans of transporting a selected group of Asiatic lions from Gir forests to Kuno jungles in Madhya Pradesh for a more secure homeland are under process. One of the photographers, Coomar N Carthik commenting on the relevance of the exhibition said, 'Asiatic lions are gradually becoming endangered which is a major concern. We hope to spread awareness about the issue through this exhibition and talk show.'
IIC is also holding a series of lectures on Asiatic lions on 5 October by Sharad Khanna, Dr Faiyaz A Khudsar and Coomaar N Carthik who discussed the issue of the Lion's endangered status and future prospects of being able to preserve the majestic animal.