Kuno Wildlife Sanctuary (KWS) is situated in the Sheopur district of Madhya Pradesh. In around 1993-1994, the Wildlife Institute of India, Dehradun, after a thorough study found this forest to be a suitable habitat for the relocation of the Asiatic lion, now confined to the range of about 1800 sq kms of the Gir forest, its only current habitat in the world.

In a desperate move, Madhya Pradesh government has written to all the zoos in the country to spare Asiatic lions for Kuno-Palpur National Park, where lions from Gir were to be shifted. Senior officials of Gujarat forest department revealed that they had received a letter asking for lions from any of the zoos here, especially from Sakarbaugh Zoo in Junagadh where lions are brought for treatment. Officials said that after Gujarat Government said no, MP government has decided to acquire at least six lions from different zoos in the country.

Exclusionist policies of forest conservation, of which preservation via dislocation is an extreme manifestation, need to be situated within the broad canvas of the conservation-poverty-rural livelihood interface.

The Asiatic Lion has been of concern for many years as the population is said to have diminished to a scant twenty to one hundred or so animals. Previoulsy, reintroduction and translocation efforts had been undertaken to try and establish another population but these efforts were not successful due to lack of proper planning and methodology. Recent research has underscored the speculation that even the wild population may be suffering from inbreeding depression. July 2007

A question that quizzes the minds of senior and field officials of Wildlife Wing of Madhya Pradesh as well as those of the knowledgeable visitors to the Kuno Wildlife Sanctuary is to why tigers are mere occasional transients and are not establishing even as a small poulation to start with, given the high habitat productivity, the excellent availability of thermal and breeding shelters and the abundant prey base. July 2007

Approximately 300 Asiatic lions Panthera leo persica are confined to the 1,883 km2 Gir forests in Gujarat, western India. To establish a second home for the Asiatic lion in its former range, Kuno Wildlife Division (1,280 km2, with a core 345 km2 Sanctuary) has been identified in Madhya Pradesh.

The designation of Protected Areas (PAs) for biodiversity conservation had had negative implications for communities that derive their sustenance from such areas. Apart from restrictions on resource use, there have also been instances of people being displaced from areas that they had inhabited and that had been designated subsequently as PAs.