J&K to seek Intn'l help in preserving wild life | india | Hindustan Times
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J&K to seek Intn'l help in preserving wild life

india Updated: Jan 19, 2007 20:31 IST
Arun Joshi

Hit hard by the growing man-wild life conflict in Jammu and Kashmir, the state government would seek help of international organisations committed to preserving of wild life to educate the people in the state.

Jammu and Kashmir Minister for Forests and Wild Life Qazi Mohammad Afzal is under attack for the failure of the government to prevent poaching. Man-eaters have been entering into the inhabited areas and leopards and bears have killed several people, while many beasts got killed in retaliation.

He told Hindustan Times that he would write to the wild life organisations across the globe to come and help Jammu and Kashmir in this matter. In this regard, he said that the initiative taken by Wildscreen Festival, the world's largest and most prestigious wildlife and environmental film festival to hold film screenings in various parts of the country was welcome.

"But I would be happier if they visit Jammu and Kashmir and screen their films and help us in making the people understand how to help harmonise the human and wild life co-existence in the state.”

The festival is being jointly organised by Wildscreen, the British High Commission and the British Council in India as part of a UK government initiative to encourage and support sustainable development and conservation in the sub-continent and globally, according to a release of the British High Commission in New Delhi.

The festival will be held from 19-24 January, "Wildscreen India will feature an exciting programme of film screenings and workshops (masterclasses) in New Delhi, Kolkata, Chennai and Pune, the release said.

"The line-up includes internationally renowned experts from the UK including Jane Goodall, renowned primatologist and the world's foremost authority on chimpanzees and Mike Salisbury, Executive Producer of the Golden Panda-winning BBC blockbuster, Life in the Undergrowth.

UK Environment Minister David Miliband will also attend a special preview of the films on wildlife crime being produced by Indian film-makers under the UK Environment Film Fellowships."

Qazi Afzal said such festivals if extended to J&K would help the state. "I am going to write to them that in future, or during their current tour, they should visit our state."

Email Arun Joshi: a_joshi957@rediffmail.com