Chat Archives
Chat on "Recent Amendments to the Wildlife Act" dated July 18, 2004

    "Recent Amendments to the Wildlife Act".    Chat on 18 July 2004

    Susan  Welcome to todays chat!  The topic for today's chat is  The chat will start at 7.30 PM(IST) 

    Mithun  Welcome Ritwick Dutta 

    Sarit  Hello Mr.Dutta hope u'll throw some light from ur rich experience 

    Easa  Ritick, can you just mention the highlights the amendments 

    Ritwick  The amendment in 2002 is very significant and its important to understand some of its major implications 

    Susan  Ritwick , can you spell out the major amendments in lay terms? 

    Ritwick  Firstly the preamble of the Act has been changed so that the purpose is not only to protect wild animals but also to ensure the ecological and environmental security of the country 

    Easa  What are the additions one by one. 

    Ritwick  two new categories of protected areas have been included viz Conservation Reserves and Community Reserves 

    Easa  What are these and what are siginificances of these

    Susan  These are the buffer areas of protected parks?

    Sarit  so wht all major changes were made in the recent amendments  Sir what i feel is that unless you enforce the laws its no point having several amendments

    Ritwick  Yes as well as no conservation reserves are areas owned by the government and specifiacally for protecting seasacpes, landscapes and areas that link one protected area with another as well as buffer areas 

    Ritwick  Community Reserves on the other hand are areas owned by the community or private individuals and where the community has traditionally conserved these areas 

    shyam  so are the rules followed by the local community 

    Ritwick  sarit, proper implementation is only possible if we have laws that are implementable 

    shyam  can u please tell how much of area is under different categories

    Easa  What are the procedures to declare these reserves 

    Easa  The first question should be how one dclares these Reserves and then is there any area declared in the country under these provisions  

    Sarit  Sir, today i had a debate with my professor that , what he said is it is bettter to control the tiger population rather than shifting the inhabitants of the forests/ so please do tell me how do i justify my point in such cases? 

    Ritwick  The power to declare a conservation as well as community reserves is vested in the state government 

    Ritwick  dear sarit, the person best to answer your question will be Dr Easa  

    Easa  The first question should be how one dclares these Reserves and then is there any area declared in the country under these provisions 

    Ritwick  to answer Dr Easa's question..as far as i know no community resreves or conservation reserves 

    Easa  The inhabitants of the forests are tiger and other animals. Of course there are people inside and even in the fringes. But the question of shifting people is debated. 

    Ritwick  The other major amendement is that a area becomes a sanctuary the moment an intended notification is made 

    Easa  There are problems while people are shifted. Rehabilitation never takes place in the real sense. more often, the people are stranded. 

    Sarit  Well once the Supreme court has gievn a verdict in favor of the wild species then where is the room for debate, or is it that Supremecourt's decision have become customary now 

    Easa  The advocates of shifting people most often forgets the social, cultural and economic implications of such shifting. Let us come back to the amendments 

    Ritwick  Sadly, the Supreme Court has not passed any verdict in favour of wildlife 

    shyam  in orissa there everyday one can see that elephants have destroyed some habitation or somebody has been trampled by elephants, the reason given that elephants are encroaching into human habitation , But the real fact is men have poached into the elephants habitat - how do we control this 

    Sarit  how are recent amendments going to help wildlife conservation in a better way 

    mangesh  Hello Everybody 

    shyam  Ashok Kumar, Vice President of the Wildlife Protection Society of India, points out that the wildlife protection law has also failed to deter well- known Indian wildlife traders, like Sansar Chand who has the largest number of smuggling cases against him and yet roams free 

    Easa  The problem of human wildlife conflict could be a topic next month. Let us use the experience of Rithwick to know more about the amendments, its implications and implementations 

    shyam  how do we make a distinction between POACHERS AND TRADERS? 

    mangesh  The wildlife Protection Act1972- Section12 I can't Understand 

    Ritwick  The amendments are positive also because now section 29 has ben amended so that no destruction of wildlife can take place unless the destruction is for the benefit of wildlife. 

    Easa  Ritick can you tell us more about the rest of the additions or deletions. 

    Sarit  Is it true that caging of Indian birds is now totally banned under the wildlife protection act and if so then if we come across such a person who is keeping a bird in captivity then what action can we take? 

    Ritwick  Section 12 allows for hunting of wildlife if it is for the purpose of Scientific research, management or educational purposes by the Chief Wildlife Warden 

    shyam  But then how do we know if the destruction has been done for the benefit of wildlife or for the benefit of some individual/group 

    mangesh  The wildlife Protection Act1972- Section12 I can't Understand 

    shyam  people can cash in on the loop holes 

    Ritwick  Sarit, keeping an Indian bird other than crow is prohibited. You can report the offence to the Forest Department or the police for violation of the WPA 

    Ritwick  The CWLW, is the authority to decide on it and the approval of the State government as well as the National Board for wildlife is mandatory 

    Easa  If animals are caught for the purposes of research or management or educational purposes, we never use the term hunting. It is capture for research or sacrifice to know more about the disease in a population of animals. It is culling if it is for control of the population increase. 

    Sarit  but then reporting to the police department won't solve the problem as they will take the bird and relase without realising that if it can adopt to the new environment 

    Sarit  what is the punishment for this offence 

    Ritwick  this brings us to the other main inclusion in the amendment i.e of the National Board for Wildlife with the PM as chairman as the statutory authority to decide on wildlife issues 

    mangesh  Nowdays Tigers & panthers mostly available in Konkan Division, why now? & who is resposible for all? 

    Ritwick  sarit, the police cannot release the birds, the offender is produced before a Magistrate and the birds are handed over to the Wildlife Department to be dealt 

    Easa  Lots of issues are involved in the animals straying into habitations. We can probably think of it for debate one day. 

    Sarit  Sirs, as this platform is very short in terms of space n time , so may i request both of you to provide us with your mail ids so that we can contact you in future whenever required? 

    Sarit  hope you won't dissapoint us 

    Easa  Why is it that people are not ready to use the provisions of Community and Conservation reserves. What were the conclusions in the Mumbai meeting. 

    Ritwick  of course you can have my email. its ritwick1@vsnl.com 

    mangesh  I saw Dart Gun is not available with any Vets. or even not a net also available to catch tigers at Forest Officers, Isn't a great problem to wild life? 

    shyam  i agree with sarit 

    Easa  easa@wti.org.in or easaelephant@yahoo.com

    Ritwick  The mumbai meetings broad conclusion was that conservation reserves have some hope but community reseves do not in view of the lack of benefit of the community 

     Easa  Is there any major problems to declare the areas into such Reserves? I think you need the permission of the owner(individual or community) to declare private areas as reserves  

    Easa  Dart guns alone may not help. You should have the drugs, knowledge about the dosge and care after capture and rehabilitation or other facilities 

    Sarit  but then if the experts feel and the government realize that it is necessary to declare a place as reserve then it can purchase the land as it does in case of other civilian constrctions works 

    Ritwick  the WPA does not provide for any permission of the owner...there are many grey areas in the provisions realted to CommunityReserves and unless these are addressed ther is no hope 

    mangesh  What about forest Officers? 

    Ritwick  What do you need to know about forest officers 

    Sarit  acha from your experience what you think is the best way to make people abide by these laws and don't take it for granted becuase it is related to wildlife 

    mangesh  Forest oFficers must have nets & training to catch Tigers 

    Easa  Is there any major problems to declare the areas into such Reserves? I think you need the permission of the owner(individual or community) to declare private areas as reserves Rithwick it would be good to give a write up on the recent amendments for the benefit of the members and there could be further clarifications by those who wants to know more 

    Ritwick  Murders and Abduction continue to take place despite having IPC and CrPC. If having laws would have solved our problems then India would be a paradise 

    Sarit  yes Easa thats a great idea if you can give a write up 

    Easa  Laws and rules are meant to deter people and act as guidelines. It may not stop crimes and misdeeds. Am I right, Rithwick? 

    Ritwick  Dr Easa can send detailed notes on Community Reserves to anyone who ins intersted... 

    Ritwick  you are right Dr Easa ! 

    shyam  that would be a good idea 

    Sarit  please do send me at sarit_nature@hotmail.com 

    Easa  Yes I shall collect it from Ritwick and get back to you. 

    Easa  Sarit, you have to definitely remind thorugh a mail. 

    Sarit  ladies n gentlemen , may i take leave now as i've got a class 

    Ritwick  great to chat with you all....you can send me your specific quesries and I will be happy to answer you all 

    Sarit  Thanks a lot to both of u Easa n Ritwick for putting your valuable inputs into the discussions i'll surely get back to u as i need to learn a lot regarding Wildlife laws and other things related to conservation 

    mangesh  Thank You, Hope we'll get minimum ideas. 

    Ritwick  thanks tio you all 

    Easa  Shall we call it a day or night?Next time there should be brief not on the topic of discussion and then chat will be more effective. 

    Sarit  yeah sure i'll send a mail 

    Ritwick  I agree with you Dr Easa 

    Easa  Thank you all. it was live but could have been more focussed. 

    Ritwick  Lets call it a day ....lets hope for a bright day for wildlife ...their day begins now

    shyam  Let me tell u all one good news ME and SARIT have started a nature club under WWF here in Bhubaneswar name - Prakruti soon we will be having our formal inauguration 

    Easa  That is a good concluding note from the moderator. 

    Easa  Thanks and bye 

    mangesh  Bye Everybody 

    shyam  bye everybody

    Mithun  It's 9 o clock time to stop chat room. Thanks 

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