Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday lauded the efforts undertaken by the government towards animal conservation, following the release of the “Status of Leopard in India” report which recorded a surge in the population of leopards in the country.

“Great news! After lions and tigers, the leopard population increases. Congratulations to all those who are working towards animal conservation. We have to keep up these efforts and ensure our animals live in safe habitats,” Prime Minister Modi tweeted.

This comes after the Union Minister of Environment, Forest and Climate Change released the status of Leopard on Monday. India’s population of leopards has gone up 60 per cent and the country now has 12,852 leopards, the ministry has said.

Releasing the “Status of Leopard in India 2018” report, Union Minister for Environment, Forest and Climate Change, Prakash Javadekar said that increase in numbers of Tigers, Lions and Leopards over the last few years is a testimony to the conservation efforts and of the fledgeling wildlife and biodiversity of the country.