Life in Kanha Forest

life-in-kanhaA wilderness area as untamed and pristine as Kanha is bound th have a rich haul of difficult-to-believe tales and shikar yarns. However, many real life incidents witnessed by the park staff are no less thrilling. What follows is a sampling of such stories to give you a flavour of the jungle life of Kanha.

On the trail of the Chuhri Tigress and her Cubs
One December morning, the forest gaurd woke up to the incessant chirping of birds outside his camp and the clatter of utensils in the kitchen. While going through his daily ablutions he brooded over the taks of the day.
Waiting outside with an axe slung over his shoulder was his game watcher who accompanied him regularly on the daily patrol of his beat.
It was a cold, foogy morning, and a thick blanket of mist hung over the nearby meadow. The mist - drenched sal trees along one side of the forest road were dripping as if it was raining. The guttural warning notes of langur and their nervous jumping about in the nearby grove were accompanied by the alarm call of chital in the distance betraying the presence of a carnivore.
At one point the forest path turned abruptly and the forest gaurd came upon a few pugmarks. He bent over one of them and examined it carefully. the past sixteen year's experience of working in the national park left him in no doubt that a rectangular pugmark of the hind feet of a female tigress, with the typical angles of heel notches. belonged to the chuhri tigress. The forest guard cautiously walked ahead looking for more pugmarks.
The game watchers, who had by now gone further ahead, made guesses about the forest guard's aniexty and, with a smile, pointed out to him some pugmarks of the cubs near him. The cub had probably strayed onto the grassy meadow along the forest path, where no pugmarks would show.

Man Eater of Bhilwani
The man eater of bhilmani killed four people between December 1974 and march 1975.
Initially, he attacked cattle and pigs, and injured humans only accidentally. He mauled and killed a cowherd, but did not eat any part of the body. After few days the tiger killed a man who was passing through the forest. He ate the body as the villagers did nit carry it away. This was his first taste of human flesh.
All initial attempts to kill the man eater failed. After he was deprived of feeding on three successive bullock kills, he killed another man. His last human kill was made in february. When the villagers gathered at the scene of the tragedy they found that the tiger had not approached the victim's body.
Nothing more was heard of the man - eater until a boy discovered a dead tiger with broken ribs and a several - month old gunshot wound. It was the Bhilwani man - eater. The injury had prevented the tiger from hunting his natural prey. Clearly, man was responsible for the Bhilwani Tiger becoming a man - eater.
Sportsmen Lapsi
Lapsi was in Forests of Kanha during 1930 to assist sportsmen in their hunting expedition. He was a expert hunter. Lapsi had thorough knowledge of Forest and nature of animals. While accompanying a hunter in his hunting expedition, they met a wild tiger in the area where Lapsi Kabar is in. When tiger charged on them, Lapsi came forward and did fight with tiger in order to protect his colleague. He fought bravely with the wild tiger but was killed on the spot. In a way to recognize & salute the bravery or Lapsi, a gravestone was erected in the same spot. Now, his grave become important destination of Kanha National Park.

Shravan Kumar
Shravan Kumar tale is described in great Indian epic Ramayana. It is the holy book of Hindus. Shravan Kumar is the only son of blind parents. As in old-age, hindus use to do pilgrimage, Shravan’s parent also wished to do same. Shravan Kumar took them to pilgrimage. He was passing through the forests of Kanha when King Dashratha, father of Lord Rama, was on a hunting expedition in same place.
While passing through forest of Kanha, Shravan’s parents asked Shravan to arrange some drinking water for them as they were feeling thirsty. Shravan went to a near by water tank, called “Shravan Tal” now a day’s, and dipped the pitcher into the water due to which a particular sound was produced. King Dashratha was on his machaan and looking for animal to kill. Dashratha had expertise in shooting at the source of sound without viewing it. In darkness, Dashratha heard the sound produced from pitcher, in a illusion of deer drinking water, he shoot towards the source of sound and killed Shravan.
On hearing the human voice, Dashratha rushed to the spot where Shravan was on his last stage. Shravan requested Dashratha to deliver water to his thirsty parents as they were waiting for him. When Dashratha offered water to them and gave tragic news to them, they refused the accept the water and curse the King as he will also he will also suffer the pain of child separation as they have suffered and they (Shravan’s parents) laid the life on the spot.
As per legend, “Shravan Tal” in Kanha is the place where Shravan went to carry water to his parents. There is a place called, “Shravan Chita” where dead-body of Shravan was cremated. Similarly there is place called “Dashratha Machaan” from which King Dashratha shoot down Shravan in illusion of Deer.
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