Cheetahs Reintroduction at Kuno National Park

Cheetahs are back in India after a gap of seven decades. Eight African Cheetahs are to be brought to the Kuno National Park alias Kuno Wildlife Sanctuary at Sheopur district in Madhya Pradesh state, India.

The proposal to bring Cheetahs was made in 2009. In 2010, Dr. Manmohan Singh, the Prime minister of India at that time, approved the proposal to buy Cheetahs from Africa. Fifty crore rupees sanctioned and paid in 2011. In 2012, the supreme court of India stayed this process and the stay was lifted in 2019.

Aircraft to bring Cheetahs for their Reintroduction at Kuno National Park
Aircraft to bring Cheetahs to India from Namibia – Image Courtesy

The first batch of 17 African Cheetahs is to brought from Namibia to India on the 17th September, 2022. Five of these carnivores are females aged between 2 to 5 years, while three males are aged between 4.5 to 5.5 years.

It is the first of its kind transcontinental transfer of African Cheetahs to India. A special flight is arranged to transport these animals to India as part of the reintroduction of these animals in India. The flight is expected to arrive in Jaipur on September 17, 2022, a non-stop flight from Namibia to Jaipur. From there, they will be taken to the Kuno Wildlife Sanctuary on a helicopter.

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modiji is to release these African Cheetahs to the Kuno National Park on his birthday, i.e., on 17th September. These animals will be released to smaller quarantine enclosures for a period of 30 days, after which they will be released to the nine-compartment predator-proof holding facility.

Cheetahs became extinct 70 years back, in 1952. Hence, India has entered into a pact with Namibia to get these African animals donated to India.

Update on Cheetah Reintroduction Program

The Cheetah’s reintroduction program went on well as planned. They were released to the Kuno wildlife park as decided earlier.

How Do I Go to Kuno National Park to See the Cheetahs?

Kuno National Park is at Sheopur District in Madhya Pradesh state, India.

There are three entry gates for this National park cum wildlife sanctuary. Tiktoli Gate is for entry from Sasaipura Village. Ahera Gate allows entry from Pohri Village. Peepal Bawadi Gate is meant for entry to Aagra Village.

Gwalior airport is the nearest Airport to all three gates. Gwalior Junction railway station is a major railway station where most of the trains stops The station code for Gwalior Junction railway station is GWL.

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