Saturday, May 26, 2012

Recovery Program to Save India's Endangered Species

Snow leopard

It has been recently announced that India's Union Minister of State for Forests Jayanthi Nataranjan has declared a recovery program to save the nation's critically endangered species and their habitats. As part of the effort, sixteen species of animals have been identified for support. Among them include the snow leopard, great Indian bustards, floricans, the Ganges River dolphin, the Kashmir stag (hangul), the Nilgiri tahr, sea turtles, dugongs, coral reefs, edible-nest swiftlets, the Asian water buffalo, the Nicobar megapode, Manipuri brow-antlered deer, vultures, the Malabar civet, the Indian one-horned rhinoceros, the Asiatic lion, the swamp deer (barasingha), and the Jerdon's courser. In reaction to concerns related to the conservation of the species on the verge of extinction, Minister Nataranjan let the Rajya Sabha know that both financial and technical assistance is administered to the state governments under several centrally-sponsored schemes (CSS). Under the schemes, major projects such as Integrated Development of Wildlife Habitat, Project Tiger, and Project Elephant are mooted to guarantee better protection and conservation of the wildlife. In addition to that, the CBI has been given the privilege under the Wildlife Protection Act of 1972 to capture and prosecute offenders of wildlife. Minister Nataranjan also added, saying that state governments have been requested to intensify patrolling in and around their national parks and protected areas.
 Kashmir stag

I'm proud to see what Minister Nataranjan is doing regarding saving lives of various endangered species in India. Not only does this program involve helping the state governments, but it also includes the CBI in apprehending and prosecuting any would-be poachers or traffickers. In addition to that, this recovery project has also been introduced by wildlife activists such as Mr. K.V.R.K Thirunaranan, founder of the Nature Trust. He stated that the Nilgiri tahr is the state animal of Tamil Nadu, therefore the state should make use of the opportunity to conserve it. I that as part of this program, several local communities across India should lend their support by helping out in the conservation of these critically endangered species. Animals like the Manipuri brow-antlered deer, which is threatened by global warming in its homeland, and the great Indian bustard whose habitat is under constant pressure of human encroachment. This is why it is crucial that community support should be aimed at to further help in this project, along with patrolling of national parks and protected areas and monitoring any illegal activities.

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