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MIS-based tracking system to link 47 tiger reserves

 

The Hindu, New Delhi, 27th August, 2014

 Tiger corridors had been delineated all over the country and a third round of tiger assessment is being undertaken by the Environment Ministry. Aim is to curb poaching and wildlife crimes in 18 States: Javadekar Union Minister for Environment, Forests and Climate Change Prakash Javadekar on Tuesday said a real-time monitoring of tiger reserves using management information system (MIS) would be launched soon by the National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA) and the Wildlife Crime Control 

Bureau. Addressing the tenth meeting of the NTCA here, Mr. Javadekar said that the new system expected to be in place later this month, would link 47 tiger reserves in 18 States and the aim was to curb poaching and wildlife crimes. He said that data from the National Remote Sensing Agency would be used for alerts for flood and fires and he was going to visit Kaziranga on September 4 and 5. He had also called a meeting with conservationists there.

 

The Ministry has already approved a Special Tiger Protection Force which would start functioning in Melghat and Navegaon Nagzira tiger reserves in Maharashtra. He said that the MoEF had reviewed the status of voluntary relocation of villages from core areas of tiger reserves and wherever it had been started, it should be completed. He said his neighbour in the village he grew up with in Pune was a forest officer who used to bring tiger cubs home. His tryst with tigers “I have seen tiger cubs from an early age and it was love at first sight,” he remarked. His Ministry has developed new standard operating procedures for orphaned tiger cubs. “The MIS has been developed by the Wildlife Crime Control Bureau and it connects all tiger reserves online,” said Rajesh Gopal, member secretary of the NTCA. The system will help share information between tiger reserves on crimes, including poaching and help curb unlawful activities in reserves. Mr. Javadekar said that tiger corridors had been delineated all over the country and a third round of tiger assessment was being undertaken.

 

He said States should propose new wildlife protection areas and if Karnataka was interested in developing the Cauvery Wildlife Sanctuary as a tiger reserve, the Centre would help. Projects that submerge tiger corridors have been asked to make changes and the government would take a balanced view of development and protection of habitats. Annual evaluation The NTCA will also carry out a Management of Effectiveness evaluation annually in tiger reserves by States on the basis of 32 parameters and Mr. Javadekar asked the Authority to think of instituting an award for successful conservation of endangered species. Speaking to the media later, Mr Javadekar said that the Ministry had asked for the detailed order of the Supreme Court which stayed the decisions of the National Board for Wildlife on Monday and said he could not say much more since the matter was sub judice. To a question on the Western Ghats reports, he said ground truthing was being conducted again by all the seven States concerned and some were still in the process of finishing it. Once it was over, a meeting would be held of all the States concerned. In any case, the matter is before the National Green Tribunal which is hearing the matter on Wednesday.