Cheetahs to prowl India for first time in 70 years
August 15, 2022 - India will be home to the world’s fastest land animal for the first time since 1952, when the indigenous population was declared extinct.
Eight Cheetahs are set to arrive in August from Namibia, home to one of the world's largest populations of the wild cat.
The first arrivals will make their home in the state of Madhya Pradesh at Kuno-Palpur National Park, selected for its cheetah-friendly terrain.
Separately, India is also expected to get 12 cheetahs from South Africa, for which a draft agreement has already been signed, with a final one expected soon, officials familiar with the matter said.
The Asiatic Cheetah could once be found in areas stretching from the Arabian Peninsula to Afghanistan. It is now known only to survive in Iran, where in 2022 only 12 were reportedly still alive.
Only about 7,000 cheetahs remain in the wild globally, with most of them in African savannahs. The animal is classified as a vulnerable species under the International Union for Conservation of Nature’s red list of threatened species.
The arrival of the cheetahs is expected to coincide with India’s 75th Independence Day celebrations on August 15.