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HomePoliticsIndiaGovt addressing human-animal conflicts

Govt addressing human-animal conflicts

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New Delhi — Reports received from the States in National Tiger Conservation Authority and Project Elephant indicate the following data on human deaths caused due to attacks by tigers and elephants.

  Caused by tigers Caused by elephants
2012-13 22 371
2013-14 24 335
2014-15 26 63
Current Year Not available Not available
Total 72 769

Degradation of the habitat including, depletion of water and food availability is considered some of the reasons for wild animals to come out of its natural habitat.

Moreover, estimates of population of major wild animals indicate that there has been an increase in number of animals. The number of Asiatic lions has increased from 304 in 1995 to 523 in 2015, that of tigers has increased from 1411 in 2006 to 2226 in 2014 and that of elephants from 25569 in 1993 to 29391-30711 in 2012.

Incidences of loss of human lives and damage to crops by wild animals are reported in various parts of the country from time to time. As such data of such incidents are not collated in the ministry.

Wildlife management primarily focuses on improvement of habitats of wild animals by augmenting the availability of food and water in areas to reduce the entry of animals from forests to habitations.

The Union government provides financial assistance to and Union Territory governments under the centrally sponsored schemes of “Integrated Development of Wildlife Habitats”, “Project Tiger” and “Project Elephant” for augmenting their efforts for management of wildlife and their habitats.

Assistance is also provided to the States for of ex-gratia relief, management of wildlife conflict situations and construction/erection of physical barriers, such as barbed wire fence, solar powered electric fence, bio-fencing, boundary walls etc. wherever feasible. In many parts of the country, anti-depredation squads have also been set up to drive away problematic animals.

Keeping in view the losses to crops inflicted by the wild animals, the ministry, on 24 December 2014, issued an advisory to the States highlighting the legal provisions under the Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972, to deal with the human-wildlife conflict situations. Vide this advisory, Ministry has also sought proposals from /Union Territory governments after objective assessment of the situation with details of the areas in which notification under section 62 of the Act, declaring any wild animals as vermin for specified period, could be helpful in management of conflict.

The same advisory has been sent to the chief ministers and ministers for environment and forests of all the States/Union Territory governments and also to all the Council of Minister’s in the Government of India.

Further, the ministry has issued a detailed advisory on 1 June to the /Union Territory governments regarding the priority actions for management of human wildlife conflict. They have been requested to institute a “Human Wildlife Management Strategy” along with other suggested measures for the proper management and prevention of human wildlife conflict situations.

This information was given by Minister of State (Independent Charge) of Environment, and Prakash Javadekar in the Rajya Sabha today.

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