Govt banks on Indo-Ger­man project to halt an­i­mal deaths af­ter T1 killing

The Times of India (Mumbai edition) - - TIMES NATION - Vishwa.Mo­han @times­group.com

New Delhi: The Cen­tre is bank­ing on an Indo-Ger­man Hu­man-Wildlife con­flict mit­i­ga­tion project to prevent a re­cur­rence of the con­tro­ver­sial killing of ti­gress Avni in Ma­ha­rash­tra and deaths of seven ele­phants through elec­tro­cu­tion in Odisha last month.

The Indo-Ger­man project aims to pro­vide tech­ni­cal sup­port at the na­tional level and in se­lected states for ef­fec­tive im­ple­men­ta­tion of con­flict mit­i­ga­tion mea­sures so that both hu­man and wildlife could be saved by shift­ing from ‘con­flict’ to ‘co-ex­is­tence’ mode.

“We have been do­ing pi­lots in three states - Ut­tarak­hand, West Ben­gal and Kar­nataka - un­der the Indo-Ger­man pro- To prevent re­cur­rence of events like that of the con­tro­ver­sial killing of Avni, sci­en­tist S Sathyaku­mar, who deals with the Indo-Ger­man project, said that the ob­jec­tive is to frame guide­lines and stan­dard op­er­at­ing pro­ce­dures so that hu­mans & wildlife can co-ex­ist ject. Three sites have been se­lected keep­ing in mind tiger and ele­phant pop­u­la­tion in those ar­eas,” said S Sathyaku­mar, sci­en­tist at Dehradun­based Wildlife In­sti­tute of In­dia (WII). Kodagu for­est cir­cle in Kar­nataka, Terai Arc Land­scape in Ut­tarak­hand and Go- ru­mara wildlife di­vi­sion in north Ben­gal are three ar­eas where the gov­ern­ment agen­cies have been work­ing in tech­ni­cal co­op­er­a­tion with the Ger­man gov­ern­ment.

Sathyaku­mar, who deals with the Indo-Ger­man project, told TOI on Satur­day that the ob­jec­tive is to frame guide­lines and stan­dard op­er­at­ing pro­ce­dures so that hu­mans and wildlife could co-ex­ist. “The idea is to prevent con­flict wher­ever pos­si­ble through tak­ing en­abling mea­sures and cre­at­ing aware­ness among peo­ple liv­ing around the wildlife habi­tat and their path of move­ment from one re­gion to other,” he said.

The suc­cess of the pi­lot project, signed last year, will be repli­cated at na­tional level, cov­er­ing pro­tected ar­eas, na­tional parks and wildlife sanc­tu­ar­ies. An of­fi­cial note says the project fo­cuses on three out­put ar­eas — de­vel­op­ment of ac­tion plan to re­duce hu­man wildlife con­flict, pi­lot ap­pli­ca­tion of a holis­tic ap­proach and in­stru­ments for mit­i­ga­tion of con­flicts and fa­cil­i­tat­ing ca­pac­ity de­vel­op­ment of key stake­hold­ers.

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