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‘Great News!’, PM Modi hails rise in country’s leopard population

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New Delhi, Feb 29:  The rise in leopard population in India has drawn applause and appreciation from Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Sharing his happiness over this on Thursday, PM Modi wrote on X, “Great news! This significant increase in leopard numbers is a testament to India’s unwavering dedication to biodiversity. I compliment all those who are part of the various collective efforts towards wildlife protection, paving the way for a sustainable coexistence.”

PM Modi’s words assume significance in the light of the fact that he has always pitched for international cooperation/alliance for the protection of biodiversity.

At every global forum, he has been batting for global efforts for the same. He also used the occasion to send out the message that the spike in leopard population reaffirms the fact that India is sincerely working for the protection of biodiversity.

Earlier on Thursday, the Minister for Environment, Forest and Climate Change, Bhupender Yadav, released a report which said that the country’s leopard population has risen to 13,874 (Range: 12,616 – 15,132) .

“Central India shows a stable or slightly growing population of leopards (2018: 8,071, 2022: 8,820); Shivalik hills and Gangetic plains experienced decline (2018: 1,253, 2022: 1,109),” said the report titled ‘Status of Leopards’.

It said that “if we look at the area which was sampled both in 2018 and 2022 across India, there is a 1.08 per cent per annum growth”.

“In Shivalik hills and Gangetic plains, there is a 3.4 per cent decline per annum, while the largest growth rate was seen in Central India and Eastern Ghats at 1.5 per cent,” the report said.

The report also said that the fifth cycle of leopard population estimation (2022) in India focused on forested habitats within 18 tiger states, covering four major tiger conservation landscapes.

‘Project Tiger’s’ conservation legacy expands beyond tigers, which is evident in the leopard status report, showcasing broader species’ protection efforts.

IANS

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