ITANAGAR, 3 Dec: A video circulated widely on social media apps Facebook and WhatsApp show definitive records of the presence of multiple tigers in Apali village on the Etalin-Maliney road in Dibang Valley district.
The video, uploaded on 16 October, 2020, and shot days prior, shows fresh tiger pugmarks next to a half-eaten carcass of a mithun. The person making the video shows the site where two tigers had been seen over the past days eating the carcass.
The video maker also interviews local villagers not far from the kill site, who claim that tigers come there regularly and have been preying upon domestic cattle for years. A local Idu woman who was interviewed said that tigers had killed her entire flock of goats a few years ago.
Incidentally, Apali is a project affected village of the proposed 680 mw Atunli hydropower project, which is immediately upstream of the 3097 mw Etalin project on the Talon river. Both the projects are being developed through a joint venture of the Jindal Power Limited and the Hydro Power Development Corporation of Arunachal Pradesh Limited.
In 2019, the Wildlife Institute of India had conducted a four-month study of the areas impacted by the Etalin hydel project and concluded that no tigers were present in the river valley.