Hyderabad: Sharpshooter Shafath Ali Khan, whose son Azgher Ali Khan was allegedly involved in the killing of Tigress Avni, has threatened to sue Union Minister for Women and Child Development Maneka Gandhi, claiming that the allegations against his son are ‘baseless’.
Speaking to ANI on phone, Shafath said, “People sitting in AC rooms, and levelling allegations against us are not right. There is no FIR in any police station or any case in court against me. Till now I haven’t killed any animal without proper government order.”
“My son killed Avni tigress in self-defence as attempt to tranquillise failed and tigress was going to attack. We are going to take legal opinion we are thinking of suing Minister Maneka Gandhi for making baseless allegations against us,” he added.
On November 2, T1 or Tigress Avni, who was believed to have killed 13 people in the last two years, was gunned down by Azgher in Maharashtra’s Yavatmal district as part of a planned operation. The tigress also left behind her two cubs.
The killing, however, caused a controversy, as Gandhi, in a series of tweets on Sunday, lashed out at the Maharashtra government for giving orders to kill the tigress, despite opposition from a lot of people.
“It is nothing but a straight case of crime. Despite requests from his own forest department and people all over India, Sudhir Mugantiwar, Minister for Environment and Forests, Maharashtra gave orders for the killing,” Maneka tweeted.
The BJP leader also lambasted sharp-shooter Azgher Ali, saying he was not authorised to gun down the tigress, and that he carried out the task illegally.
“This is patently illegal. Despite the forest officials being committed to tranquilise, capture and quarantine the tigress, the trigger-happy shooter has killed her on his own under direct orders of Mungantiwar. The tigress was a mother. Now her two cubs will also die,” she added. Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis also expressed his sadness over the decision to kill the man-eater tigress and assured that his government will initiate a probe to check if there were any procedural lapses in the entire operation.