Pune: Sarcastically commenting on Union Minister Maneka Gandhi’s demand of resignation of State Forest Minister Sudhir Mungantiwar over the killing of man-eater tigress Avni, Mungantiwar said, “I wish her desire gets fulfilled.” He added that she is not the authorised person to direct him to resign. He also said Avni’s cubs had been spotted.
Mungantiwar was in the city to attend a function on Thursday. Pune-based bonsai artist Prajakta Giridhari Kale has created a Guinness World Record of displaying 3,333 bonsai plants. Kale was presented the Guinness World Records certificate at the function by Mungantiwar.
State Department of Industry Assistant Secretary Sanjay Ingale, Guinness World Records Adjudicator Rushi Nath, Sakal Media Group Chairman Pratap Pawar, Sancheti Hospital Head and Philanthropist Dr KH Sancheti and Industrialist Vitthal Maniyar were present.
After the function, Mungantiwar interacted with the media. He said, “We followed all standard procedure in case of Avni. I respect animal lovers. But in Avni’s case, they were protecting a man-eating tigress. Gandhi is a Union Minister and she has all right to ask me directly about the incident instead of tweeting about it. Gandhi expressed her thoughts on the platform, but I avoided replying there.”
He said, “Orphaned cubs of tigress Avni have been spotted in Pandharkawada. Our machinery is working to protect and secure them. We will relocate them in Pench forest.”
Bonsai for employment generation
“There are trees being cut in the city during development. We can preserve the trees with help of bonsai art in the city. Kale has done great work in the field of bonsai and they want to convert this art for employment generation. The government will study this and take appropriate decision,” stated Mungantiwar.