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HindustanTimes Thu,17 Apr 2014

Akhilesh govt mulls bounty on pesky nilgais

Brajendra K Parashar, Hindustan Times  Lucknow, February 28, 2013
First Published: 00:48 IST(28/2/2013) | Last Updated: 00:50 IST(28/2/2013)

The nilgai (blue bull), a fast proliferating herbivore and a menace to crops, may soon carry a cash reward on its head. The Akhilesh Yadav government is planning to give monetary incentive to anyone who shoots the animal.

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The agriculture department and the forest department have chalked out a plan.

"Anyone volunteering to kill a nilgai will get Rs. 500 or more," said agriculture minister Anand Singh.

"Once finalised, the scheme will be sent for the Cabinet nod."

Nilgai comes ruins crops, especially pulses. The farmers complain regularly about the animal, the minister said.

The killing of nilgai is not prohibited in the state. But under forest laws, one has to obtain a licence in advance.

"Not many people come forward for licence due to procedural complications," said agriculture production commissioner, Alok Ranjan.

And despite a licence, people are often hauled up by police.

"UP, along with other states, had demanded that the Centre declare the nilgai a vermin species, but the Centre did not agree. So we are trying to simplify rules."

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