Environment minister's controversial statement about tigers (video) | The Daily Star
07:21 PM, June 05, 2015 / LAST MODIFIED: 11:41 AM, June 06, 2015

Environment minister's controversial statement about tigers (video)

Meet Bangladesh’s Environment and Forest Minister Anwar Hossain Manju who seemed least bothered about the number of country’s national animal, the Bengal Tiger.

On the occasion of World Environment Day today, we bring to you the minister who advised activists not to bother about cutting down "some trees".

“Corruption is rampant in the country of 160 million people and you are telling me to be concerned over only 15 trees?” Manju said while talking to an environmental organisation in Sylhet, according to a local media Sylhet Today24.com.

“The people of southern Bangladesh don’t have gas; if they don’t cut trees what will they cook with?”

Regarding the safety of tigers in the world’s largest mangrove forest, the Sundarbans, the minister said: “We got $1,300 million to protect tigers there. I have said in my speech that we cannot save 160 million people, how can we save 400 tigers?”

He also went on to say: “There may be some 400 tigers in the Sundarbans. But who cares?

They gave money so I wrote down 440 tigers. Do you know people and tigers both sleep in the vicinity of the Sundarbans?”

Regarding environmental organisations and NGOs, the minister said, “This is a business and one of the most lucrative businesses around. We are talking about environment now, because international organisations give us money…they don’t give it to you, they give it to me” he added.

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