(TNS) — Prime Minister Narendra Modi will celebrate his birthday by releasing Namibian cheetahs into the wild in central India to burnish his conservationist credentials over an animal made extinct by colonial hunters and shrinking grasslands.
Since becoming prime minister in 2014, Modi’s birthdays have become yet another platform to help magnify his popularity. His supporters have screened films made about his life, held vaccination drives during the pandemic and launched a mobile app to help people communicate directly with him.
This time around Modi, who turns 72 on Saturday, will release the eight cheetahs flown in from Namibia into a special enclosure in the Kuno National Park in Madhya Pradesh state. The sedated big cats will then be kept in quarantine for a month.