Tiger with Cubs

Cherished memories of a disappeared family in the wild

There is an unspoken bond between a lensman and his subjects in the wildlife. Wildlife Photographer Alijah Mohammad shares his pain on the shocking death of a tigress and disappearance of her cubs.

Male cub, Himmat Singh

Male cub, Himmat Singh

It was in late April, when Jr. Kankati, Bandhavgarh TR, obliged the park visitors with sightings of her first litters. The news spread across the social media and we were extremely eager to see the family of 5 tigers.

We booked our safari for the end of May, at Magdhi zone of Bandhavgarh. On our first safari in the afternoon, we were to go to Jr. Kankati’s area. With enthusiasm, hope, and anticipation, we headed to that zone of the park. Almost a kilometer before, we were told by a chowkidar “Jaldi jayiye darshan ho rahe hain”. The speed limit of 20kms/hr. was making us feel so restless but we managed to reach the location and indeed it was no less than a ‘darshan’.

We first spotted Bamera’s son (X male) resting beside a man-made water body. Then came this bold male cub, Himmat Singh, leaving the thickets and walking on the safari track. What a magnificent sight it was to behold! On each of our 6 safaries on that trip, we sighted members of this family including Jr. Kankati and her other two cubs.

Soon the season ended. We wished the cubs well and hoped they stay safe in the monsoon. I was harbouring the thought and wish to see Himmat Singh and his siblings all grown up by our next visit to the park.

Within a month, we received the shocking news of Jr. Kankati’s sudden disappearance and then death. The cubs were shifted to an enclosure overnight, though it was reported that their father was looking after them since Kankati disappeared. He never left his cubs alone. When you happen to observe a particular tiger closely a few times and capture some beautiful moments, unknowingly you build a bond. It hurts deeply to imagine that we possibly lost Jr. Kankati to human cruelty.

Soon the news came about a new tigress, Solo, coming into that zone and was seen with Bamera’s son (X male). It is fascinating how animals find their own way to heal and move on in life. Nature just never fails to amaze us.


Typical Father

Typical Father


Cover Pic: Himmat Singh with his sisters near the pond

Read also: Underwater Heaven: Havelock (Andaman)


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About the Author /

Alijah is in a relationship with nature and wildlife since he was 12 and it's been 4 years he chose wildlife photography as a fuel to his relation. His decade-long relationship with nature started when his father used to take him along during Tendu leaf collection party at nearby jungles.


  • Kuldeep Singh Rajput

    February 25, 2018

    I feel sad. Very few people understand the forest, wildlife and above all the tiger…. most of us feel it adventurous, but too late to realize that they survive on there own in hot sun, rain, winters, pain….we forget to respect it…..forest is everyone’s root for survival

    • Alijah

      March 14, 2018

      So true.. we do not remember the fact that The Earth is for all.

  • Kyara Goyal

    March 10, 2018

    Your love for Nature and Wildlife is really incredible!! Very well narrated..and quoted it absolutely right “”Nature just never fails to amaze us.”” Through u person like me started developing interest in Mother Nature and Wildlife 🙂 Buddy keep posting and Blogging more like this stuff and also abt ur experiences…Great work 👏👍

    • Alijah

      March 14, 2018

      Thanks a lot for your kind words !

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