‘Man-animal conflict has become a political issue in Kashmir’

ARIF SHAFI WANI

Srinagar, Nov 22: In the wake of rising incidents of man-animal conflict involving mostly bears in the Valley, experts have recommended formulation of a comprehensive plan to prevent the situation from escalation. 
  “The Hangul centric conservation efforts have taken heavy toll on other wild animals particularly bears. Jammu and Kashmir has a lopsided policy for equitable conservation of wild animals as it is only concentrating on Kashmir division and has totally neglected Ladakh and Jammu,” said Dr M K Ranjitsinh, chairman Wildlife Trust of India (WTI) during the 21st International Conference on Bear Research and Management, here today.
  “We need to protect bear habitants from human intervention to prevent the bears from intruding into human habitations,” he said.
 Chief Wildlife Warden J&K, AK Singh, said the government was making efforts to check the man-animal conflict. “Man-animal conflict has become a political issue in Kashmir. Sometimes it even changes into law and orders situation as people themselves try to tame the wild animals. However due to our sustained efforts we have prevent considerable number of man-animal conflict incidents,” he said. 
 Regional Wildlife Warden Kashmir Manzoor Ahmad Tak said man-animal conflict has emerged as major challenges for the wildlife department. He said in coordination with various organizations including Wildlife Trust of India (WTI) and Wildlife Institute of India efforts are being made to minimize incidents of man-animal conflict.
 Dr Vivek Menon co-chair IBA and executive director WTI minced no words to accuse the states of being indifferent towards bears. “26 out of 32 states in the country have wild animals, other than bear as their state symbol. 
 “In Kashmir, the man-animal conflict involving bear has assumed horrendous ramifications. For past four years we have been working check the problem. We have devised some measures including rapid response teams, relief and ex-gratia to victims and awareness about wild animals particularly bears as long term solution,” he said.
 Dr John Beecham co-chair Bear Conflict Special Group gave a global overview of man-animal conflict and recommended measures to control it. Dr Satyakumar scientist Wildlife Institute of India said dwelt on conflict management measures.
 With the onset of winter bears and leopards have been frequently spotted in residential areas like Harwan, Brein, Nishat, which fall in the Zabarwan range. Besides the city, the problem is severe across the countryside like Kupwara, Bandipora and Pulwama where forests have been vandalized by the smugglers during past 20 years.

Lastupdate on : Thu, 22 Nov 2012 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Thu, 22 Nov 2012 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Fri, 23 Nov 2012 00:00:00 IST




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