WWF-India felicitates the efforts of the Assam Police in controlling wildlife crime
Every year, heavy monsoons in Assam result in the rise of water level in the mighty river Brahmaputra, leading to destructive floods that not only impact humans, but also the wildlife in and around the Kaziranga National Park. This time of the year sees great number of wild animals migrating towards the hills of the Karbi Anglong forest complex to find a safe habitat till the floods subside. However, it also makes the wildlife vulnerable to poaching as they move out of the Protected Area into habitat with a lower level of protection. The flood season this year witnessed a sharp rise in poaching cases, especially of greater one horned rhinoceros, in the Karbi Anglong district. WWF-India immediately brought this issue to the notice of the Assam police, and requested for their urgent intervention. Soon after, in association with other enforcement agencies, WWF-India organized an orientation programme on wildlife laws and crime control for the officials of the Assam Police in the Karbi Anglong district, with an aim to enhance their capacity towards monitoring and controlling of wildlife crimes.
The Assam police immediately took action by sending out their forces in Karbi Anglong district as well as in the adjoining districts to check wildlife crime. In the last three months, the Assam police arrested over 50 persons involved in wildlife crime and seized arms and ammunitions. Their efforts, along with the information shared by the Forest Department and other enforcement agencies, together played a significant role in apprehending wildlife criminals. The intelligence information generated by the Assam Police will help to strengthen control on wildlife crime in the area.
Congratulating the Assam police for their efforts and thanking them for their cooperation through this formal ceremony, Dr. Dipankar Ghose, Director, Species and Landscapes division, WWF-India, presented a letter of appreciation to Mr. B.B. Chetry on behalf of the Secretary General and CEO of WWF-India, Mr. Ravi Singh. The letter specially acknowledged the efforts of Mr. Bolin Deori, Addnl. SP, Mr. Naba Kumar Bora, OC, Diphu PS and Mr. M. Bramha, SI, Diphu PS. As a token of appreciation, WWF-India provided GPS sets and search lights to be used by the police team in the field.
Speaking on the occasion, Mr. Chetry said, “We appreciate the support provided by the state Forest Department by way of sharing valuable information about wildlife crime. We also thank WWF-India for organizing the training workshops for our teams, and providing these vital field equipments. Our department will do all it takes to prevent wildlife crime in the Karbi Anglong district and help in apprehending poachers.”
Mr. J. S. Bey and Mr. C. R. Bhobora also congratulated the Karbi Anglong police on behalf of the Forest Department for their commendable efforts.
The event concluded with a vote of thanks by Dr. Pranab J Bora, WWF-India, who highlighted that collaborated efforts of various agencies such as local NGOs working for wildlife conservation, the state Forest Department, and enforcement agencies such as the state Police, form a very strong force which can wipe away cases of wildlife crime, and give a safe future to the Indian wildlife.