Wildlife Bureau holds drive in Mumbai to spread awareness about illegal wildlife trade

The campaign was a part of celebrating World Wildlife Day, which is observed on March 3rd annually.

mumbai Updated: Mar 04, 2018 00:17 IST
Badri Chatterjee
Badri Chatterjee
Hindustan Times
mumbai,world wildlife day,illegal trade
Wildlife Crime Control Bureau officials hand out pamphlets to spread awareness about the issue on Saturday.(HT photo)

In a bid to celebrate World Wildlife Day (WWD) 2018, Inspectors and constables from the Wildlife Crime Control Bureau (WCCB), western region, on Saturday conducted an awareness drive from Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus to the Gateway of India and Marine drive.

They carried banners and pamphlets highlighting the theme ‘Big cats: predators under threat.’ Hundreds of commuters were sensitised to illegal wildlife trade, especially with regard to the sale of the body parts of tigers, leopards and other big cats.

“Leaflets and pamphlets were distributed among the commuters and we informed them about the threat from poaching, illicit trafficking, habitat loss, climate change and human-wildlife conflict, especially for big cats,” said M Maranko, additional director, WCCB.

“Apart from the majestic beauty of these cats, if the carnivores’ population declines, it will automatically alter the food chain and herbivores will destroy our agricultural settlements,” said Maranko.

On February 1, HT had reported that according to data from the Wildlife Protection Society of India (WPSI), more than a third of the 40 leopards that died in the country in January 2018, were killed by poachers. Last year, Maharashtra recorded 21 tiger deaths, highest in a decade and second highest in India. Of these, six tigers were electrocuted, either accidentally or on purpose.

Addressing the country on Saturday, Dr Harsh Vardhan, union environment minister, said, “Illegal wildlife trade has become a serious crime across the world, due to which we are gradually losing big cats. This WWD, I urge you all to play a proactive role in helping governments control this heinous crime.”

First Published: Mar 03, 2018 23:47 IST