Arunachal mulls Bill to conserve flora and fauna

Itanagar: Chief Minister Nabam Tuki, a known conservationist, is going to ink another record soon with the objective of protecting and conserving the rich flora and fauna of Arunachal Pradesh.

The Arunachal Pradesh Forest & Wildlife Protection Bill, once it gets the nod of the assembly, would provide additional teeth to state’s environment & forest department (E&FD) to initiate tangible steps in that direction.

E&F Parliamentary Secretary CT Mein said on Saturday that the CM, who holds the E&FD charge, has given the green signal for the bill. The six-day Budget session of the state assembly is scheduled begin from March 22.

Once enacted, the bill would facilitate setting up of two companies of Arunachal Pradesh Forest Protection Force (APFPF) to protect unguarded forest and rich wildlife, particularly the rare and endangered species and a company of Special Tiger Protection Force (STPF).

A company headed by a commander comprises 102 personnel of all ranks.

The APFPF would be fully funded by the GoAP. The STPF would be funded by the National Tiger Conservation Authority(NTCA) of the union MoEF and initially deployed at Pakke Tiger Reserve (PTR) in East Kameng district, Mein disclosed.

PTR is estimated to have minimum 25 Royal Bengal tigers but as per the initial report of ongoing tiger census indicated identification of 17 individual big cats, one of the most endangered species in the world, said WL&BD deputy conservator P Ringu.

The World Wildlife Fund-India partnered with the E&FD is engaged in the census through camera traps in PTR, while Aranyak, a noted NGO engaged in wildlife conservation, in collaboration with E&FD is conducting the tiger census in famed Namdapha Tiger Reserve(NTR) in Changlang district, which houses the four big cats beside Hoolock Gibbon, Golden Cat, Marbled Cat, Mishmi Takin, Red Panda, Namdapha Flying Squirrel, White Wing Wood duck, Namdapha Shortwing Bird, to name few of numerous highly endangered species. It was declared a reserve forest in 1970, wildlife sanctuary in 1972, national park and tiger project in 1983. (UNI)

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