Tired and footsore, they scrambled up to the top of the ridge just as the sky in the east began to lighten.
‘Take a good look,’ Rana Shaan-Bahadur said. ‘And welcome to your new home – Taboo Valley!’
Rana Shaan-Bahadur, alpha-male tiger of Sher-Kila National Park-feted around the world after being filmed by a wildlife photographer-is also father to four cubs, Hasti, Masti, Phasti and Zafraan. When their mother, the beauteous Raat-ki-Rani falls to a poacher’s bullets, Shaan-Bahadur suddenly finds himself a single parent, a matter of great shame for a male tiger. To escape the taunts of the other tigers, he moves to the dreaded Taboo Valley, an abandoned area with a dark history inside the national park.
But Khoon-Pyaasa, the poacher, is on the prowl, determined to kill the magnificent Shaan-Bahadur, as are Shaan’s rivals for the position of alpha-male. And deadliest of them all, ASKAA-Al-Seekh Kabab Atankvad Andolan-an underground group of porcupine terrorists, have sworn to exterminate all tigers and will stop at nothing till they get their quills into Shaan-Bahadur and his cubs.
A hilarious and touching story of wildlife politics, fearsome terrorist tactics, dysfunctional tiger families and more, The Tigers of Taboo Valley is Ranjit Lal at his very best.
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