Eight cheetahs from Namibia arrived in Gwalior on Saturday, marking the beginning of the translocation of cheetahs into India from Namibia which was allowed by the Supreme Court more than two years ago.The arrival also happens to coincide with Prime Minister Narendra Modi's birthday..In 2017, the National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA) had filed an application before the Supreme Court for the re-introduction of cheetahs in India.The court, while allowing the application, made an important distinction: the species being introduced was the African cheetah which had never actually existed in India, and was therefore not a re-introduction but a relocation. .A bench headed by then Chief Justice of India (CJI) SA Bobde also took on record a submission that the cheetah would be relocated on an experimental basis, and would be nurtured and watched to see if it can adapt to Indian conditions. The NTCA will be guided by experts who will supervise the entire process..Supreme Court constitutes Expert Committee to examine viability of introducing African cheetahs in India [Read Order].Senior Advocate Prashanto Chandra Sen for the NTCA, had argued before the Supreme Court, that the International Union For Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (IUCN) guidelines had accepted re-introduction of species as a legitimate process, and further studies had been done for bringing in the cheetahs into India and various areas identified for it..It was the senior counsel's stand that the object was to establish a keystone species which could then maintain and restore the natural biodiversity to provide long-term economic benefits. In India, the strategy had worked when tigers were reintroduced into Panna and Sariska.It was further argued that the reason for choosing cheetahs was the conservation benefits, since it is a grassland based species and grasslands have reduced drastically in India. .Therefore, in saving the cheetah, other grassland based species which are and endangered, are also saved- the most prominent among which was the nearly extinct Great Indian Bustard. Such an effort also contributes to the genetic diversity of the species as well..Earlier, In 2009, a plan to reintroduce the cheetahs to Kuno was mooted by the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MOEF). This plan was, however, struck down by the Supreme Court in 2012.At the time, re-introducing the cheetah from Gir to Kuno was considered a priority. The top court also felt that more research and study needed to be done for the exercise.