TIGER BODY TO RELY ON LOCALS, HUNTING COMMUNITIES
Express News Service
New Delhi, November 29
At its firs meeting held here, the National Tiger Coservation
Authority (NTCA) decided to ask all tiger states to launch a special
drive to recruit local forest dwelling people to fill up ground staff
vacancies in all tiger reserves. The authority will also seek help
from the Ministry of Home Affairs (Internal Security) to fight
insurgency and the Naxalites in affected tiger reserves.
For the next financial year when the NTCA gets its first independent
budgetary support, it has sought an estimated Rs. 104 crore from the
national exchequer for effective conservation initiatives, a three-
and-half time increase compared to Project Tiger's Rs. 30-crore
budget this year.
'We can't save the tiger by isolating the local population. We have
to engage them by, ifnecessary, relaxing the prescribed
qualifications for such posts. The process requires to be completed
within a time-frame of six months. I am happy that we has fruitful
discussions on the formation of state-level steering committees,
preparation of tiger conservation plans and establishment of the
Tiger Conservation Foundation,' Rajesh Gopal, NTCA member-secretrary,
told The Indian Express.
The NTCA was constituted on Septmenter 4 under the Wildlife
(Protection) Amendment Act, 2006, as recommended by the Tiger Task
Force. Uner the chairmanship of the Minister of Environment and
Forests, the 24-member body consists 19 members from various
ministries and eight non-official experts. The formation of the
Wildlife Crime Bureau - another provision in the amendment Act - is
pending with the Finance Ministry and is not expected befoere January
* Creating a pnel with NTCA experts, Ministery of Home Affairs
(Internal Security), Ministry of Panchayati Raj, Ministry os Social
Justice, Ministry of Tribal Affairs and Chief Wildlife Wardens of
States to suggest measures for containing insurgency and Naxalite
problems at places like Indravati (Andhra Pradesh), Palamu
(Jharkhand) of Valmiki (Bihar) tiger reseves.
* Creation of monitoring laboratory at Dehradun's Wildlife Institute
* Completion of Phase-I analysis of the All-India tiger Estimation
using the new methodology by next month and all phases by July next
* Using the new protocol develped in the All-India Tiger Estimation
for regular, institutionalised monitoring of tiger reserves.
* Setting up a committee under the chairmanship of Prof Madhav Gadgil
of Bangalore's Indian Institute of Science for suggesting networking
withe researchers towards fostering field research adn refining the
parameters for independent monitoring.
Source: Page 4 The Indian Express, Ahmedabad Dated November 30 2006.