Tiger That Terrorized India Has Been Killed

T1, or Avni, was killed by famous hunter's son; animal rights advocates are livid
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 5, 2018 9:45 AM CST
This May 9, 2017, photo shows a young female Bengal tiger (not T1) lazing by the edge of a lake in Ranthambore National Park in India.   (Dean Fosdick via AP)

(Newser) – The man-eating tiger that's been on the loose in India is no more. The Guardian reports that T1 (aka Avni), suspected of killing more than a dozen victims in a two-year span, was shot dead Friday in the state of Maharashtra. The supposed sharpshooter who took T1 down: Asghar Ali Khan, the son of Nawab Shafath Ali Khan, said to be the country's most famous hunter. "This was a tigress that was aggressive and clever, and had absolutely no fear of humans," Khan, who felled the animal with a .458 Winchester Magnum rifle, tells the Telegraph. "She had tasted human flesh and saw us like monkeys, or goats, or other prey. So when she charged at us, I had to shoot in self-defense."

One of the more creative proposals to catch T1 was to use Calvin Klein cologne—it's reportedly like catnip for some big cats—but Khan said that ploy didn't work. "She was too clever for the cologne," Khan says. "We were dealing with an extraordinarily smart tiger." T1's killing isn't without controversy: Animal rights activists claim it hasn't been proven T1 was behind the human killings, per the Washington Post. "I am deeply saddened by the way tigress Avni has been brutally murdered," tweeted Maneka Gandhi, the country's minister for children and women's development. "I am definitely going to take up this case of utter lack of empathy for animals as a test case. Legally, criminally as well as politically." T1's body was taken to a Nagpur zoo for a necropsy. (The cologne idea sounded good initially.)

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