The Arunachal Pradesh State Board for Wildlife (SBWL) today approved the proposal for a comprehensive Red Panda Conservation Plan in the state.
The Board in a meeting under the chairmanship of Chief Minister Pema Khandu also approved to celebrate the Pakke-Paga Hornbill Festival at Seijosa in East Kameng district, in the vicinity of the Pakke Tiger Reserve, as an annual event.
The state boasts of the largest amount of potential Red Panda habitat in India and therefore a conservation plan is being pushed by World Wide Fun (WWF) India to preserve the endangered species, an official release said.
WWF (India) has proposed to develop a state-level management plan for Red Panda based on advanced habitat analysis and stakeholder consultation and ensure its implementation through the state Environment and Forest department.
The plan will be first of its kind in the country and shall set a benchmark for all future conservation efforts for securing Red Pandas on a long term basis.
The Pakke-Paga Hornbill Festival touted as the only wildlife conservation based festival of the state, which was being celebrated through community participation, will now be taken over by the state government.
Khandu directed the Environment amd Forest department to ensure establishment of required infrastructure for celebration of the festival annually and make it a global event.
Arunachal Pradesh is home to various endangered faunal species like high altitude pheasants " Peacock, Monal and Tragopan.
The Board approved a proposal for establishment of a High Altitude Breeding Center cum Aviary at a select location.
It observed that the center will be not only significant in view of promoting tourism but also for education and interpretations and breeding of the pheasants.
The Board also approved few other proposals related to wildlife clearance to allow land for construction of roads and defence establishments.
The Board members also discussed in detail the prevailing menace of land encroachment and illegal activities within reserve forests.
It was decided that the government will relook at the licenses provided for guns that can be used for hunting wild animals.
The chief minister directed the Home department to study the menace of illegal use of gun licenses and submit a plan to deal with it to the cabinet.
He also directed the department to issue strict directives to concerned DFOs and subordinate officers to physically inspect and check wherever there are complaints of illegal activities in reserve forests.
Khandu requested the Board members to take up issues related to their respective wildlife sanctuaries with concerned deputy commissioners.
"If issues are not resolved at the district level or no action is being initiated on their complaints, they may approach the CMO, he suggested," the release added.
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