Ravindrasinh Anirudhsinh Jadeja is an Indian cricketer who represents Saurashtra in first-class cricket and the Gujarat Lions in the Indian Premier League. Indian cricketer Ravindra Jadeja was posing for a photo with lions of Gir forest in background. Ravindra Jadeja was let off by Gujarat forest department after he paid a fine of Rs. 20,000 for a taking selfie with lions at Gir Wildlife Sanctum at Sasan in Junagadh, an act strictly proscribed by law.
Junagadh officials did not even insist on Jadeja’s presence to record his statement in person, but accepted a statement given by the cricketer’s father-in-law, Hardev Singh Solanki, who carried a power-of-attorney, and also paid the fine. Jadeja stated in the power of attorney that he was not present in the state.
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Since Ravindra Jadeja is out of the country, his father-in-law Hardevsinh Solanki, a resident of Rajkot, gave the statement on behalf of Mr Jadeja and paid the fine recently, Chief Conservator of Forests (CCF), Junagadh. Lion safari is one of the main attractions at Sasan, where the forest department provides open-hood jeeps to tourists to watch lions inside the sanctum. However, the tourists are proscribed from come down the vehicle during the safari.
The inquiry report is so far to be sent to authorities. Authorities collected Rs. 20,000 fine from Jadeja for flouting rules inside the sanctuary during his visit in June.
On June 17, Authorities ordered an inquiry after some of the photos, where Mr Jadeja along with his wife Reeva were seen standing on the ground and posing in-front of lions, went viral on social media platforms.
In one of the photos,Ravindra Jadeja and Reeva were seen sitting on the ground and a lion resting under a tree behind. In another photo, the cricketer was seen pointing at lions. In some of the photographs, the forest staff was also seen standing with the couple near their vehicles.
Penalty and inquiry report are two different things. The inquiry report will be sent to higher authorities after finalise it. Action against the forest staff would be taken based on the findings of the report.