Nagpur: The four-wheeler Gypsy vehicles, being plied in buffer zone of Tadoba Andhari Tiger Reserve (TATR) for jungle safari have been found transporting tourists illegally. The documents of most of the Gypsies have been found incomplete but still tourists are being transported without check. The Deputy Director of TATR (Buffer Zone) and Regional Transport Office (RTO) are turning a blind eve towards the brazen violation and thus playing with lives of tourists.
According to sources, some of the Gypsy drivers possess only the learning licence. The illegal transportation is going on since the past two years. Any incompetent driver picks up any Gypsy and takes tourists for jungle safari in TATR apparently in ‘connivance’ of concerned authorities. Demands to initiate stern action against these erring Gypsy drivers and buffer officials proved futile. Recently, even as RTO authorities cracked down on illegally plying gypsies in Tadoba Andhari Tiger Reserve, gypsy operators continued to break norms.
In an instance of serious violation of wildlife regulations, a gypsy operator kept some tourists inside TATR till late in the night as the fuel of the vehicle got exhausted. Shockingly, no action was taken against the erring gypsy operator and driver.
The stipulated timing for jungle safari during afternoon session is between 2.30 pm to 6.30 pm and movement of vehicles during night hours is strictly prohibited. While the safety of tourists was put on the risk by keeping them in an open gypsy till midnight in tiger territory, it also disturbed the tranquility of the forest.